By Tia Lynn Lecorchick staff writer
A Morgan County home-schooler, Karen Mullins, petitioned the Morgan County School Board on April 14 to allow her son, who will be in ninth grade this fall, to join the Morgan County High School marching band. Mullins provided the board with research regarding how other states handle the inclusion of nontraditional students within public school extracurricular activities.
According to Mullins, currently 22 states have equal access laws for home-schooled children. “We chose to home-school because we want to talk freely with our kids about God,” said Mullins. “But we also see a lot of good in the Morgan County schools and want our son to be part of it.” “The schools here are very progressive, both academically and with their extra-curriculars,” she explained.
“I would love for him to have a marching band experience and I would love for him to have it here.” Mullins encouraged the board to consider the bigger picture to provide better educational opportunities for non traditional students in the future.
“As people become more educated and technologically becomes more important in our lives, there is going to be more of a hybridization of education…it’s not just going to be traditional or non traditional students anymore, but a Hodge-podge,” said Mullins. Dave Belton, school board member, spoke in favor of Mullins.
“I would just like to point out how involved Mrs. Mullins is with the band. She participates a lot and helps with the band already,” said Belton. Erica Veasley, a school board member, was also open to Mullins’ request. “I like the idea, we’ll see if we can make it happen,” said Veasley. The board did not render a decision yet, but promised to consider the request. “I appreciate you coming and speaking to us today and the passion you have for your children’s education. We will take this under advisement and give due consideration to it,” said Nelson Hale, chairman of the board.