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January / February 2004

Can Judicial Tyranny Be Stopped?

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From the heart

The difference made by "little things"

Impact of the Widows Curriculum Scholarship Fund

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How do you spell T-R-O-U-B-L-E?

Home School Legal Defense Association and the Christian Association of Parent Educators-New Mexico (CAPE-NM) strongly opposed the recent reconfiguration of New Mexico's education agencies. The New Mexico Department of Education is now the "Public Education Department," and the elected board of education has become a virtually powerless "Public Education Commission." But new agency names are the least dangerous effect of the restructuring.

Under the old law, the department of education had the never-used authority to shut down a homeschool. Homeschoolers relied on their elected representatives on the board of education to balance the department of education's power, and no homeschool was ever shut down. Now that the elected board has been replaced by an appointed secretary of education, a family's right to homeschool may depend on the will of a single political appointee. In addition, even though homeschooling is certainly not "public education," legislators expect to subject all homeschool matters to the new secretary of education. This could spell trouble.

HSLDA and CAPE-NM are working to influence the legislative writing process in order to limit the harm these changes might cause. We urge all New Mexico homeschoolers to be ready to contact their representatives when the legislature meets in January.

— Scott W. Somerville