AUSTIN (AP) An attempt to allow private schools into the Texas public school athletic league is dead for this legislative session, the Senate sponsor said Thursday.

Public schools have been fending off attempts to crack open the University Interscholastic League for years. This time, a bill passed the Senate but never got a vote in the full House of Representatives before deadlines prevented it from coming up.

The session ends Monday and Sen. Dan Patrick, the Houston Republican who sponsored the measured, said the issue is dead for this session.

Patrick had argued that allowing private schools to compete in the UIL is an issue of fairness for families who pay taxes that support public schools but send their children to private schools.

Patrick said the bill was swamped under a coordinated telephone and e-mail campaign by public school superintendents and coaches against it.

Texas public schools have long sought to keep private schools out of the UIL over concerns they may be able to recruit athletes.