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"Tebow bill" defeated by Virginia education committee

RICHMOND, Va. -- A Virginia bill that would allow home-schooled students to compete in public school sports has been defeated. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports the bill was killed Monday by a Republican-led education committee.

The committee initially supported the bill but a tied vote stopped House Bill 496 from heading to the full House of Delegates.

Del. Gordon Helsel, R-Hampton, was the only Republican to vote against the bill. He said his local school districts opposed it.

The bill would have also allowed home-schooled students to participate in other interscholastic programs.

The issue became well known because of former NFL and University of Florida football player Tim Tebow who had been allowed to play the sport at a public Florida high school despite being home-schooled.

CBS affiliate WTVR reported the bill was introduced by Del. Rob Bell, R-Charlottesville.

 "If you are a parent and your kid doesn't fit into the public-school curriculum right now, you can go private or you can go home-schooling, except many places, including a county I represent, have very limited private school options," Bell said last year. "Yet we're forcing parents to say, 'You can have football, or you can have the education that you want.'"

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