Eligibility Rules


Player Eligibility Rules for the NJ Homeschool Sports Association
(FULL rules listed below)

Good news!  After some additional meetings we have revised the player eligibility rules for the league and have some important new information to share with you:  

- The eligibility rules for basketball AND baseball will now be the same. 

- The eligibility rules apply to inter-league homeschool competitions and tournaments ONLY.  If you choose to have older players on your team when competing with SCHOOLS that is your decision as the coach. 

- The date for eligibility has been changed to June 15th.  The competitive year for the league will be marked by this date, meaning that the year runs from June 15th to the following June 15th.  This ensures that the baseball tournament, which is in early June, is also covered by the age qualifying date. 

-  As long as your homeschool player turns 18 AFTER June 15th they are eligible for the current year. 

-  Yearly rosters will be collected from each team wishing to be eligible to participate in the tournaments.  Pay attention to deadlines.

-  A copy of the eligibility rules will be included with the tournament registrations.  We encourage you to share these rules with your parents during your yearly registration so there will be NO confusion at the competitions.

The Benson's and McQuarrie's
NJ Homeschool Sports


Player Eligibility Rules for the NJ Homeschool Sports Association
Based on the recommendations of HSPN (Home School SportsNet Inc), which is considered to be the leading national homeschool sports authority, here are the player eligibility rules for the NJ State Homeschool Sports Association and their sponsored tournaments and competitions:
- An athlete becomes INELIGIBLE for homeschool varsity athletics if he/she attains the age of EIGHTEEN prior to June 15th of the current school year. However, any athlete attaining age 18 on or after June 15th shall be eligible for the ensuing school year.
- ALL participating teams are to impose a 4 year limit on the Varsity team state tournament competitions. NO 5 year high school students are permitted to compete.  Therefore, high school status is by age, NOT by grade.  Freshman year students will be 14/15 years of age, Sophomore students 15/16, Junior students 16/17 and Senior students 17/18. 
- Coaches can play junior high students (6th-8th) in the varsity tournaments without penalty if they wish.
- An eligible home educated high school student who meets the age requirement can also include:
1) those who are dual enrolled in community college as a supplement to their PRE-EXISTING home education program
2) those who are enrolled in a homeschool correspondence program, a homeschool distance learning program or a home school learning cooperative
3) the traditional homeschooled student, receiving their entire instruction at home
- Students who are on homebound study from either public school OR private school are INELIGIBLE to participate in the NJ Homeschool sports league. Students of public or private schools are also INELIGIBLE.
Some additional notes and recommendations:
Encourage your graduating players who no longer meet the eligibility rules to form their OWN college level team to scrimmage local community colleges. It is best for the graduates and their team if you have an annual graduating ceremony to honor their varsity accomplishments. If graduates were permitted to continue with their team as young adult players they would be forced to choose between other activities which are competing for their attention and time (community college, work schedules, social activities with older friends, etc.) and their former teammates, who are of the true high school age, could in effect be penalized.
Nationally, public school eligibility is usually the same as it is here in NJ which is: "An athlete becomes ineligible for high school athletics if he/she attains the age of nineteen prior to September 1st. However, any athlete attaining age 19 on or after September 1 shall be eligible for the ensuing school year." A birth certificate is required as proof of age. BUT, the purpose of the state in extending to age 19 is to allow the student, who may have been held back a year in public school, to still compete for 4 years, since he/she would have arrived in high school as a 15 year old instead of a typical 14 year old freshman. NO public school varsity student is permitted to play for 5 years. However, in the case of the homeschool player, grade is irrelevant and age is therefore the qualifier, as you are eligible for the varsity level by age 14, so there is NO grade necessity for the extra year. A homeschooled student can compete as a 14, 15, 16, 17 year old (who will become an 18 year old during the year), allowing for NO more than 4 years of play. Having "age" as the qualifier frees the league from the IMPOSSIBLE task of trying to define what constitutes a "5th year senior high student."


Howard Cosell: "Sports is human life in microcosm."