Ever wonder if it really makes a difference when you ask your legislators not to pass a bad bill? In April, homeschoolers in Illinois joined together to find out. Tune in to today’s Home School Heartbeat with host Mike Farris and HSLDA’s attorney for Illinois, Scott Woodruff, to learn what happened!
Scott, last time, you explained how a proposed Illinois senate bill would have given the State Board of Education tremendous power over homeschoolers and radically curtailed homeschool freedom. How were you able to stop this egregious legislation?
Mike, we alerted homeschool families all over the state. We worked closely with homeschool organizations in Illinois, and we prepared carefully for the hearing date. A Homeschool Freedom summit was scheduled to take place right before the hearing; that was packed out to capacity. After that, everyone came over for the hearing itself. The hearing room quickly filled to capacity, and then the entire statehouse filled up to where security told us there were 4,000 homeschoolers present!
Scott, it seems that Illinois has been a hotbed of controversy this year in a lot of respects. What else has been going on that affects homeschooling?
Well, right after the withdrawal of Senate Bill 136, another senator filed a bill encouraging the US Senate to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and, even worse, urged every state agency to comply with the CRC now. We contacted the senator who was sponsoring the bill, we let her know that we were going to have a whole lot of people show up for her hearing again, and, right as I was about to buy my plane ticket to Springfield, she announced she was withdrawing her bill.
That shows the power of 4,000 homeschoolers showing up at once. Thanks so much, Scott. I’m Mike Farris.