Maine Introduces “Home Visit” Legislation
In the last issue of the Home School Court Report, the restrictive regulations of the Maine Department of Education were critiqued. Public hearing on these regulations was scheduled for April 3.
Now home schoolers face another potential threat from the state legislature. On February 28, 1991, Representative Susan J. Pines of Limestone introduced LD 888 (House Bill 618) to the Joint Committee on Education. This bill, if passed, would require that home schools submit to monthly home visits to “ensure that a level of academic instruction comparable to in-school instruction is being provided.” The bill would also give the state authority during these “inspections” to “determine whether the equivalent home instruction program should be continued, altered, or terminated.”
If enacted, this legislation would violate parents’ rights to privacy and to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Home schoolers should write to Chairman Nathaniel Crowley and the other 12 members of the Joint Committee on Education to register their opposition. Not only will these letters help convince the Committee to kill LD 888, this communication will also serve as a tremendous opportunity to educate the legislature on home schooling in order prevent future restrictive legislation.