Provides an exception to high school athletic competition eligibility by permitting pupils with a developmental or physical disability to compete for a fifth year.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to eligibility for senior high school athletic competition
PURPOSE AND JUSTIFICATION: An act to add a new Section 3208-b of the Education Law to allow high school students with a developmental or physical disability to continue participation in interscholastic sports for a fifth year.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: The bill would direct the Commissioner of Education to draft a regulation that would allow a school district superintendent and athletic director to apply for a waiver of the four-year limitation on eligibility for interscholastic athletic competition when a student has a developmental or physical disability.
This regulation also sets forth the guidelines by which the school district's Section of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association can grant such a waiver.
JUSTIFICATION: The public education system entrusts the state with the responsibility for education of the whole person, including character, knowledge and other skills and abilities. Participation in interscholastic sports helps students in the development of the whole person by contributing to social skills, self-esteem and team building.
This new section of law is necessary to support models of inclusion and give special needs students the opportunity to participate in sporting activities.
For at least two decades, educators have explored with success various models of inclusion to incorporate special needs students into regular public school classrooms and school activities. However, in the athletic arena, the Commissioner of Education's regulations and Education Law have not evolved to reflect these newer models.
This law is named after Jordan Maliken, a 20 year-old special needs senior at Amherst High School, who sought to continue participating interscholastic Track and Field for a fifth year but was denied the opportunity under previous law.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2010 - S.6054/A.8913 -- EDUCATION/Education
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 4082 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE March 16, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sen. RANZENHOFER -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Education AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to eligibility for senior high school athletic competition THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new section 3208-b to read as follows: S 3208-B. ELIGIBILITY FOR SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETIC COMPETITION; DISABILITY EXCEPTION. THE COMMISSIONER SHALL PROMULGATE REGULATIONS TO ALLOW A WAIVER OF THE FOUR-YEAR LIMITATION ON ELIGIBILITY FOR SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETIC COMPETITION WHEN A STUDENT WITH A DEVELOPMENTAL OR PHYSICAL DISABILITY, WHO IS OTHERWISE QUALIFIED TO COMPETE AND HAS BEEN SELECTED FOR SUCH COMPETITION IN THE PAST, HAS NOT YET GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL. THE COMMISSIONER SHALL DEFINE DEVELOPMENTAL OR PHYSICAL DISABIL- ITY FOR PURPOSES OF THIS WAIVER IN ACCORDANCE WITH PART 200 OF THE COMMISSIONER'S REGULATIONS. SUCH WAIVER SHALL BE REQUESTED BY THE ATHLETIC DIRECTOR OF SUCH STUDENT'S SCHOOL AND THE SUPERINTENDENT OF SUCH SCHOOL'S DISTRICT AND MAY BE GRANTED BY SUCH SCHOOL DISTRICT'S SECTION OF THE NEW YORK STATE PUBLIC HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION. SUCH WAIVER SHALL ONLY ALLOW PARTICIPATION ON AN UNOFFICIAL, NON-SCORING BASIS IN A NON-CONTACT OR NON-COLLISION SPORT, PROVIDED THAT ANOTHER QUALIFIED STUDENT, WHO IS OTHERWISE ELIGIBLE FOR COMPETITION, IS NOT DENIED THE OPPORTUNITY TO PARTICIPATE. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD02532-01-1