February 9, 2004

Senate Bill 6450: Linking Homeschoolers to Certificate of Mastery Homeschools

Senators Stevens, Johnson, Hargrove, Mulliken, Parlette, Benton, Roach, Pflug

Due to the hard work of Washington Association of Teaching Christian Homes (WATCH), Christian Homeschool Network of Washington (CHN), and HSLDA, Senate Bill 6450 was stopped dead! After HSLDA identified this bill as one to be opposed, WATCH and CHN contacted the sponsors of the bill and convinced them to kill the bill. Due to the language in Senate Bill 6450, Washington homeschoolers would have taken several steps backward had it not been stopped.

First, the bill would have resurrected the certificate of mastery and provided the "benefits" of that certificate to homeschool students. However, these benefits are deceitful in that the whole certificate of mastery is tied to the "school to work" program that homeschoolers have fought so hard to be free of. To see more on why these programs are dangerous, go to http://www.hslda.org/docs/nche/Issues/G/Goals2000.asp.

Second, Senate Bill 6450 would have required a homeschool student to "pass" a standardized achievement test or knowledge-based test to reap the supposed benefits of the bill. As you may know, Washington does not require a minimum score on a standardized achievement test for homeschool students. This bill would have opened the door for a more restrictive homeschool law and potentially limiting the freedom that homeschool parents have in selecting the annual assessment option for their children.

This bill was introduced on January 21, 2004 and sent to the Education Committee. Due to the sponsor's pulling their support for the bill, it is now dead.

HSLDA's Position:
This bill was opposed.

 Other Resources

Bill Text (pdf)

Bill Text (html)

Bill History