Home School Legal Defense Association

P.O. Box 3000, Purcellville, VA 20134



For Immediate Release Contact: Ian Slatter
October 2, 2003 (540) 338-8663

LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST
COMMISSIONER OF EDUCATION



Washington, DC - Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) filed suit today in federal court on behalf of homeschool graduate, Paul Owens. Monroe Community College (MCC) in Rochester, New York, notified Owens that his admission to its Marketing program had been revoked because he had been homeschooled through high school. Owens was one semester shy of receiving his degree when he received the notice.

MCC admitted Owens to its Marketing program in 2001. According to rules in place at the time, Owens fully met all qualifications for admission. Since that time, Owens has proven himself at the college level by maintaining a B average. MCC "dematriculated" Owens because of a recent letter from New York Commissioner of Education, Richard Mills, which changed longstanding policy and now requires homeschool graduates to obtain a General Equivalency Diploma (GED) in addition to their homeschool diploma.

"GED's are for high school dropouts," said James R. Mason, III, HSLDA Litigation Counsel. "Paul Owens graduated from a recognized high school program. Requiring a young man who is about to receive his college degree to take a test for high school dropouts is absurd."

The policy change also affects recent homeschool graduates who are seeking admission to New York state colleges.

"Homeschool graduates have proven themselves at every level," said Mason. "They should not be treated like second class students."

If your organization would like to schedule an interview with Jim Mason please contact Ian Slatter, Director of Media Relations at (540) 338 8663 or via e-mail Ian@hslda.org.

Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is a 20 year old, 75,000 member non-profit organization and the preeminent association advocating the legal right of parents to home school their children.

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