LENOIR CITY, Tenn. (WVLT) - Seven year old Egan Rains may still be in the "Little League," but he's already dreaming to years ahead as a high school, college and eventually NFL football star. Making it to a high school team is a long fight his parents finally hope to see to fruition.
It's a bill that's been bouncing around for nearly 15 years. State legislators have proposed allowing homeschooled kids to participate in interscholastic public school sports. Now it's through the House and Senate awaiting final approval from Governor Haslam.
"We pay the same taxes. We do all the same things with regards to that, that any other kid or family around here does so they would definitely want those opportunities," said Egan's mom Farah Rains.
The Rains chose to educate their kids at home for several reasons.
"Biblical beliefs, morals, values. There were some things that we felt like we would rather do at home than to send them into the public school system," said Rains.
Still, Farah and husband Nick hope to see their kids receive every opportunity available to other kids. For big sister Elysia, that means dance. For Egan, it means football.
"It's something that even though he's young, he loves it. And he's excelling at it and his education. And with his sports and definitely wants that opportunity if he at all can," said Rains.
Opponents argue the law could cause recruiting nightmares for local schools if districts aren't regulated, but that's the least of the Rains' worries. They say it's all about the kids.
If the governor doesn't sign the, the Rains say they'll weigh their schooling options. But for now the kids are young, and mom and dad have several more years to see if the hobbies stick and to see if the law is written in their favor.
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