2022-23 TSSAA Bylaws Article II, Section 27
A public virtual school under the jurisdiction of the local Board of Education must make application and be approved for TSSAA membership in order for students enrolled in the school to participate in TSSAA athletics.
TSSAA virtual school members may choose either (a) to have their own sports’ teams or (b) to allow their students to participate in all sports at their zoned public schools as assigned by the local Board of Education.
If the member virtual school administration chooses to allow their students to participate at their zoned public schools, the principal shall provide the host school(s) a list of students who will be participating in each sport and verify that the students are academically eligible prior to the date of first practice in each sport. The principal is responsible to provide the host school(s) with any additional information needed to complete student eligibility. The host school is responsible to submit eligibility to TSSAA for the virtual students participating in their program(s).
Minimum Eligibility Requirements:
This bylaw establishes the minimum eligibility requirements for a student attending a public virtual school in TN operated by the local Board of Education.
- In order for a student to practice or participate at any level, the student must reside in the geographic area of the LEA of the member virtual school. The virtual school must be a member of TSSAA in good standing. The administration of the virtual school must choose to allow their students to participate for their zoned public schools.
- In order for a student to practice or participate at any level, the student must participate for their zoned public school as assigned by the local board of education. The zoned school where the student will participate must be a member of TSSAA in good standing.
- Any student that transfers to or from a virtual school, which is under the jurisdiction of the LEA, with an athletic record in the past twelve months and no change of residence that justifies the change in schools will be ineligible to participate on the varsity level twelve months past their last date of participation in the sport where the participation record exists.
- The student must meet all other TSSAA eligibility requirements.
- If the virtual school decides to start their own athletic programs, the students enrolled in the public virtual school must participate in those programs at the school where they are enrolled.
- After participation at the first member school, any changes within member schools shall be governed by the transfer rule.
Frequently Asked Questions Virtual School Rule
1. A student lives outside the geographic area of the LEA of any TSSAA member virtual schools. Is there a scenario where this student could participate in athletics for a TSSAA member school?
No. Students must live in the geographic area of the LEA of the member virtual school. Their residence must also be in the zone (territory) of the public school where they wish to participate as assigned by the local board of education.
2. A student lives inside the geographic area of the LEA of a TSSAA member virtual school. School A and School B are both in the geographic area of the same LEA. The student’s residence is in the zone (territory) of School A, but they wish to play for School B. The student lives outside the zone (territory) of School B. Can the student play for School B?
No. Students must live in the zone (territory) established by the LEA of the school they are participating for.