A landmark piece of legislation would permit home school and private school students in South Carolina to participate in public school gifted programs.
Home school and private school students in South Carolina are currently not allowed to enroll in public school drama classes and other gifted arts courses, but a bill drafted by State Representative Charles Limehouse of Charleston would change that.
“Educrats” and other opponents of the initiative claim they would not get state dollars to pay for the non-public school students, but Limehouse says his bill is being filed to provide for those state dollars. He says he and like-minded colleagues think enacting this legislation “would be the right thing to do for South Carolina because all children are important to us.”
The state representative asserts that, just because a particular student and his or her family choose not to avail themselves of the academic curriculum of a public school, this “does not mean they can't participate in other aspects of the public school and opportunities that school happens to offer.”
And Limehouse insists his initiative will not hurt public schools financially as opponents claim. “We're not talking about a great deal of money,” he says. “What we're talking about is the public school administrators' willingness to include the private school students and the home school students in some of the programs they have to offer.”
The South Carolina legislator says he is optimistic about the bill's chances for passage when he files the legislation in January. “In order for these students to participate, the General Assembly will have to change state law,” he says, “and that's exactly what I'm going to move aggressively to do.”
The House Republican Caucus has voted to make Limehouse's bill one of its key initiatives during the next legislative session. If passed, the bill would pave the way for home school and private school students in South Carolina to enroll in government-funded schools' gifted programs.
(This article courtesy of Agape Press).