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Cover Story
Compulsory Education Laws: The Dialogue Reopens

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A Week in the Life of David Gordon

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a contrario sensu

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words

Over the past year, my 6-year-old sister Florence has been honing her reading skills. She reads everything she sees, and enjoys tackling the hard words in the Bible like blaspheme and Bythinia.

So one afternoon as I was enjoying a book myself, she called to me from across the room where she was reading Calvin and Hobbes.

“Hey, Emily, wanna hear a joke?”

“Sure, Florence,” I replied.

She started to read. She read with enthusiasm. She read with drama. She read, “Blahg! Yah! Urghh! Munch, munch, munch... Whoop! Aughh!” and burst out laughing. Still chortling, she asked, “Isn’t that a funny joke, Emily?”

Now I know why they say, “A picture’s worth a thousand words!”

Emily Domenech
Round Hill, Virginia

Improper Request for SSN

Fluvanna and Halifax Counties have recently distributed notice of intent forms which ask home schooling parents to submit their Social Security numbers (SSN). This is not a lawful request.

Under the Federal Privacy Act of 1974, it is unlawful for any federal, state, or local government to deny any individual any right, benefit, or privilege provided by law because of an individual’s failure or refusal to disclose their SSN with three narrow exceptions. Furthermore, it is a violation of federal law even to request a SSN without disclosing (1) whether providing the SSN is mandatory or voluntary and (2) by what authority the number is solicited.

On behalf of our members, Home School Legal Defense Association has communicated with county authorities and firmly asked that they remove this request from their form. — Scott A. Woodruff