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January / February 2004

Can Judicial Tyranny Be Stopped?

Freedom watch
From the heart

The difference made by "little things"

Impact of the Widows Curriculum Scholarship Fund

From the director
Across the states
Active cases
Members only

New email confirmation

Support homeschooling when you shop online
About campus

PHC in the news
President's page


HSLDA social services contact policy/A plethora of forms

HSLDA legal inquiries

Prayer & Praise




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Vacation over for legislature

The beginning of California's legislative season in January launches a very busy time for those striving to protect the freedoms of parents to direct the upbringing and education of their children. Thousands of bills are introduced every year. In conjunction with Family Protection Ministries (FPM) and Christian Home Educators Association of California, Home School Legal Defense Association will be monitoring every new piece of legislation for its impact on those freedoms.

Several old threats need to be watched as well. The following bills carried over from the 2003 legislative session could still pose a threat to homeschooling families. (If, however, these bills are not voted on by the end of February, they will die.)

>> Although Senate Bill 950 is dead, a new version will likely be introduced in 2004. Sponsored by Senator Richard Alarcon, S.B. 950 would have made "habitual truancy" a new category of child abuse, thus opening truancy to social services investigation.

>> Assembly Bill 56, sponsored by Assembly Member Darrell Steinberg, would lower the compulsory school age from 6 to 5.

>> S.B. 432, sponsored by Senator Deborah Ortiz, would "establish a system of universal preschool for all children, three and four years of age, in California." Both of these bills usurp parental authority in determining the readiness of their children to begin formal education.

>> Sponsored by Assembly Member Hannah-Beth Jackson, A.B. 1342 involves the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). It would require the California legislature to implement programs and policies dictating curriculum for all forms of education, including private schools and homeschools.

During the upcoming legislative session, you will likely receive e-lerts jointly from HSLDA and Family Protection Ministries asking you to call or write your representative on a particular bill. It is imperative that homeschoolers stand together and let our voices be heard at the capitol. More than ever before, homeschoolers need to diligently fight legislation that encroaches upon our rights. We hope you will take action when asked and will stand with us.

Because Family Protection Ministries is essential to the protection of homeschooling freedoms, we at HSLDA strongly urge each of our California member families to generously support FPM. To help preserve our freedoms, FPM needs to receive significant support now. For a one-year complimentary sub-scription to their newsletter, send a tax-deductible gift of $50.00 or more. For those who can afford to give more, the gifts will be used to help preserve homeschool freedoms in California. Make your checks payable to FPM and mail to: P.O. Box 730, Lincoln, CA 95648, or call 916-786-3523.

— J. Michael Smith