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School board association lobbies for veto of high school athletes bill

Governor Rick Scott has yet to act on a bill that would shrink the Florida High School Athletics Association’s power to levy fines. Lynn Hatter reports the proposal diminishes the association’s ability to monitor illegal student athlete transfers, and the School Board Association is calling on the Governor to veto the bill.

Some students play sports in hopes of catching the eye of a college recruiter or even a chance at the pro circuit. Some parents switch schools to get their child more visibility.  The state high school sports association monitors those switches to make sure there’s no illegal recruiting going on. But Dr. Wayne Blanton, head of the Florida School Board Association, says House Bill 1403 would limit that monitoring power.

We believe a student could transfer from one school to another during the year to play different sports. And I don’t necessarily think that’s what our student athletes are about.”

Under the bill, transfer students would be able to play as long as they meet the deadlines for the start of a sports season. And the proposal would put fines on coaches for breaking the rules. Blanton says his group is crafting a proposal to school boards that standardizes rules for student athlete transfers. Gov. Scott has until April 28 to either sign or veto the measure.


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Lynn Hatter is a Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative. 

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