Home Field Advantage: Dexter Mosley Act Provides Valuable Opportunities for Home-Schooled Athletes


Catherine Townsend

Hello Homeschoolers: The recently instituted Dexter Mosley Act allows homeschooled students to play on their district’s school sports team. Warriors welcome Heidi Heppner and others to be part of the great Dubs’ teams.

Embodying the spirit of teamwork, Helen Keller once said, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” Playing on a school team builds character, confidence, and leadership, yet here’s a cause for consideration: what if you are homeschooled? Does this team mantra still apply? Prior to the year 2020, being a part of a sports team led by one’s school district was impossible for homeschoolers, but this year, a new door has opened that presents a universe of possibilities for homeschooled students.

The tired, aching bodies of student-athletes are a heavy weight to bear, but time and again, the sports Dubs of North Atlanta are drawn back toward this achy feeling because of the faces of friendly teammates as they work together to meet a united goal. The bonding time spent with friends on sports teams is one of the main attractions for high school students to compete in team sports. This year, homeschooled students gained this team aspect. With the introduction of Senate Bill 51 or the Dexter Mosley Act ( aka Tim Tebow Law), homeschooled students in grades six through twelve can now complete one class at the school in their district. This allows them to be able to participate in their respective sports. Heidi Heppner, a homeschooled cross country runner for NAHS said, “The new rule allowing homeschooled kids to participate in team sports at the school in their district has made running so much more fun for me.”

It wasn’t until May of this year that homeschooled athletes were allowed to compete in GHSA regulated sports, and with the introduction of this law came many new talents to up the competition. Naturally, for every new decision, there come multiple perspectives, and following on the heels of these perspectives is debate. These opposing viewpoints are on full display, as some reveal a contest to the validity of the Dexter Mosley Act. While some graciously accept new homeschooled athletes with open arms, others turn a cold shoulder to the decision. With debates flaring between the two sides, Coach Regan, the athletic director at North Atlanta, sees the bright light at the end of the tunnel. “Anything new takes time to get used to, so give it a little bit of time without judgment because time heals most wounds,” said Regan. 

Despite some being opposed to the idea of additional homeschooled athletes joining sports teams, a radiant, glistening future has become the present for homeschoolers. Alongside teammates, Heppner has found her true passion for running through competing with a team again. She said, “I love running with my teammates. The support that comes along with being on a team is incomparable.”

So far, the arrival of homeschooled athletes has yet to make a significant impact on the sports program at North Atlanta, but Warriors are prepared for the exciting new changes that are bound to come along with the Dexter Mosley Act. So, as teams are getting into the groove of the fall season, teammates are ecstatic to return to the joyous faces of old teammates, and maybe even some new ones.