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Changes being proposed by the Department of Education to Vermont's Homeschool law, 16 VSA 166b, appear to include both positive and negative provisions. While parents would no longer be required to submit a minimum course of study and information regarding a child’s learning disability, the proposal would require mandatory standardized testing every year.
HSLDA opposes mandatory testing and would oppose this bill if such language were not revised to allow for alternate means of assessment—if assessment were required. HSLDA supports the idea that annual assessment should not be a required. Most states do not require an assessment of any kind and of those that do, many allow for less frequent evaluations.
HSLDA is working with Retta Dunlap, Vermonters for Better Education, to closely monitor these potential changes. We will keep you informed.
The Vermont Department of Education has made recommendations to the Senate Education Committee that the homeschooling law be changed. The language available below is not part of any bill that has been introduced but has been created for discussion purposes only. HSLDA has favored attempting significant change in Vermont for some time and we hope this may be the start of increasing freedom fro Vermont homeschoolers.
It has been reported by homeschooling advocate and legislative liason, Retta Dunlap, that the Senate Education committee has decided that it will deal with less controversial changes in its education "catch-all" bill. Therefore HSLDA expects that the proposed changes will not be introduce this session but will rather form the basis for discussion that Vermont homeschoolers can have with the Commissioner of Education (once he returns to health) about improving the law.
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