Thursday, February 10, 2011

Testimony for HB 595

The following is the testimony I gave to the House Education Committee regarding HB-595. Frankly, I do not think this legislation goes far enough but it is a step in the correct direction.

Quote of the Day - "A recent MORI poll, commissioned by the Campaign for Learning, found that 90% of adults were favourably inclined towards further learning for themselves.....The bad news is that 75% said they were unhappy and alienated in the school environment and that, therefore, they preferred to learn at home, in the local library, at their workplace - anywhere other than a school-type setting." - Meighan

Spelling errors, grammar errors, misuse of homonyms and typos are left as an exercise for my readers.

Good afternoon, Chairman Balboni and Honorable members of the House Education Committee,

I am writing today to ask you to vote ITL on HB-301 and OTP on HB-595. I would like to see complete homeschooling freedom in New Hampshire because in a free society, the sole purpose of the State is to protect our freedoms. That's all. Nothing more.

Any parent willing to lift the education burden from fellow taxpayers should not be regulated by the State. Parents in 24 states have this right; Live Free Or Die parents should have it as well. I am asking you to pass HB 595 which will move us closer to freedom and away from the current laws that declare parents to be guilty until proven innocent.

There are approximately 200,000 public students statewide. According to the fall 2010 NECAP results 23% of our students in grades 3-8 and 11 failed to demonstrate proficiency in reading, 34% failed to demonstrate proficiency in mathematics and 45% of our students failed to demonstrate proficiency in writing. There are only about 5,000 homeschoolers in New Hampshire; far more public school students fail to achieve proficiency in basic academics than homeschool students. Taxpayers spend hundreds of millions of dollars annually, yet tens of thousands of students fail to read at grade appropriate level. Frankly, I do not understand the need of some legislators to focus on homeschooling's safely controlled campfire, while public school Rome is burning to the ground.

My children are my responsibility. I have decided that my children shall not be a burden on the rest of society by educating them at home. I have chosen that they not suffer as part of a failing educational system. If I wanted to provide my children a substandard education I would send them to my local public school which has failed to meet Annual Yearly Progress for its seventh year.

I am tired of having to fight for my constitutional right to instruct my children as I see fit. I am tired of fighting organizations that benefit from horrific homeschooling laws designed to fatten their pocketbooks. Frankly, I am tired of the witch hunt against homeschoolers and the nanny state homeschooling laws.

Today this fundamental question comes before to the legislature: Shall the state control parental instruction, or shall parents invoke their historical prerogative to instruct in freedom. Please OTP HB 595.

Best Regards,

Catherine Peschke

"Government's first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives."
Ronald Reagan

"Education of all children, from the moment they can leave their mother's care, in national establishments at national cost." Friedrich Engels, 1847 in the draft of the Manifesto called, "Principles of Communism"

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