Thursday, February 25, 2010

All Representatives Should Support Homeschooling Freedom and HB 1580

Below is a copy of an email letter I sent to Representative Tom Howard.

Dear Honorable Representative Howard,

I am writing you to ask you to support homeschooling freedom and vote against the HEC recommendation to ITL HB 1580.

Key Points -

HB 1580 would restore the compulsory attendance law, RSA 193:1 to its original purpose. This compulsory attendance law was never intended to apply to parents who were responsibly instructing their children. It was intended for parents who were not undertaking this important obligation; it was intended for parents, who were derelict in their duty, their fundamental right and responsibility, to instruct their own children.

· HB 1580 restores this unencumbered exemption for children instructed by their parents as written in the original compulsory attendance statute of 1871.

· HB 1580 also restores a parent’s due process rights, which date back to the Magna Carta, and include: equal treatment under the law, the presumption of innocence, no searches or seizures without probable cause, etc. Due process holds the government subservient to the law of the land, protecting individual persons from the state.

· HB 1580 enumerates compulsory education requirements, which include instruction in science, mathematics, language, etc., ensuring that the state interest in education is satisfactorily met, while existing statute, RSA 169-C:3 XIX(b), protects children from abusive or neglectful parents.

· The House Education committee admits that HB 1580 contains valid constitutional language, yet the majority of the committee claims that placing this valid constitutional language into statute is “inappropriate” as it would create “problems” with the current home education statute. No, kidding! The current home educational law is unconstitutional! That is exactly the problem. Yet the majority of the committee rejected HB 1580, which would resolve this constitutional problem.

· On Feb. 2, 2010 Chairwoman Rous sent a letter from the House Education Committee to the Department of Education, endorsed by eight other committee members, seeking increased regulation of home education similar to those regulations found in the recently defeated and controversial HB 368, which was voted ITL 324-34 on Jan. 13, 2010. These House Education Committee members display little respect for decisions of the House.

You might want to know that parents are free to educate their children at home:
----without notifying the state in AK, CT, NJ, ID, TX, MO, IL, IN, MI and OK.

---- with notification requirements only in DE, KY, AL, MS, WI, NE, KS, NM, WY, MT, UT, NV, CA and AZ.

That's about half the country that allow parents to instruct their children at home without any supervision whatsoever. (Actually, NH has one of the worst laws in the country.)

Thank you,

Cathy Peschke

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