The Home School Court Report
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The new pioneers: Black home schoolers

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New York
Liberating legislation introduced

Senator John R. Kuhl, Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, introduced legislation which would eliminate the most burdensome restrictions of the 1988 law governing home instruction programs. Parents would no longer be subject to the regulatory provisions of Section 100.10 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education.

Designated as Senate Bill 4767, this bill would make the following changes in the current law:

  • eliminate the Individualized Home Instruction Plan (IHIP) requirement;

  • eliminate the quarterly reports requirement;

  • eliminate required subjects at all grade levels;

  • permit the alternative method of evaluation (instead of standardized testing) every year;

  • permit parents who wish to test their children to choose any nationally-normed standardized achievement test, in addition to a State Education Department test or another approved test;

  • eliminate the requirement that the local superintendent consent to the person who administers a standardized achievement test or who conducts the alternative method of evaluation;

  • lower the minimum standardized test score from above the 33rd percentile to above the 23rd percentile; and

  • eliminate the provision for home visits while a home instruction program is on probation.

    If this bill is enacted, it will not only relieve parents and public school officials of time-consuming administrative tasks, it will significantly increase the freedom of home educators in New York to direct the education of their children. New York has the potential through this legislation to go from the state with the most restrictive home school law in the nation to a state with one of the most favorable laws for home educators. Parents would only have to notify their local school district of their decision to provide a home instruction program for their children and then submit an annual assessment at the end of the school year.

    Home School Legal Defense Association strongly supports this legislation and urges freedom-loving parents across the state to contact their legislators to express their support of Senator Kuhl's bill. - Dewitt T. Black