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Massachusetts

January 30, 2008

Senate Bill 357: Raising the Compulsory Attendance Age

Sponsor:
Senator Robert A. O’Leary (D)

Summary:
Senate Bill 357 would raise the compulsory attendance age from 16 to 18.

Status:

1/10/2007 (House) Filed
1/10/2007 (House) Referred to Joint Committee on Education
1/10/2007 (Senate) Senate concurred in committee referral
4/5/2007 Hearing Scheduled for May 8, 1:30 p.m., Gardner Auditorium
1/16/2008 (Senate) Accompanied Study Order Joint Committee on Education—See Senate Bill 2465

HSLDA's Position:
Oppose.

This is another attempt to impose increasing government control over children and to further restrict a parent’s right to direct the education and upbringing of their children. This right has been recognized by the U.S. Supreme Court as a fundamental constitutional right.

This bill, if passed, would subject all students to compulsory attendance laws for two more years. Many homeschool families graduate their children from homeschool programs to enroll them in college or apprenticeship programs. Today, parents have the authority to determine whether their children continue in formal secondary education after the age of 16—this right must be preserved.

In addition, raising the compulsory attendance age is a strategy used by professional teacher unions to guarantee more funding for public schools and higher levels of teacher employment.

Action Requested:
None at this time.

 Other Resources

Bill Text    (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

Bill History