From the HSLDA E-lert Service:
< BACK TO ARCHIVE

Date:
From:
Subject:

1/21/2003 5:08:04 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Montana--Calls Needed to Defeat Bill Expanding Government's Control Over Children

----------------------------------------------------------------------
From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
----------------------------------------------------------------------

January 21, 2003

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

Tomorrow, January 22, 2003, the House Education Committee of the
Montana Legislature will conduct a hearing on House Bill 274 which
would raise the compulsory attendance age from 16 to 18. This
legislative proposal exempts students who have completed the 12th
grade or have passed the GED examination. The hearing will take place
in Room 137 of the Capitol in Helena at 3:00 p.m.

We oppose all attempts to expand the compulsory attendance age, since
it would increase the amount of time the state has jurisdiction over
our children. This bill would potentially give public school
officials two more years to harass or investigate Montana
homeschools.

House Bill 274 is sponsored by Representative Carol C. Juneau (D) HD
85.

REQUESTED ACTION

(1) Please attend the hearing of the House Education Committee on
Wednesday afternoon to demonstrate your opposition to House Bill 274.

(2) Please immediately call and email the members of the House
Education Committee (listed below) and your own state representative
with this message:

"Please vote against House Bill 274 which would raise the age of
compulsory school attendance. Expanding compulsory attendance would
only waste taxpayers' money, force unwilling, disruptive students
into the classroom, and take away the right of parents to decide
whether their 16 year old is ready for valuable work experience or
college."

House Education Committee:

- Rep. Joan Andersen (R) HD 23, Chairman
RR 1 BOX 1012
FROMBERG, MT 59029-9701
Home: (406) 668-7405
JOANV@WTP.NET

- Rep. Larry R. Lehman (R) HD 87, Majority Vice Chairman
PO BOX 184
POWER, MT 59468-0184
Home: (406) 463-2381
LRLPOWER@3RIVERS.NET

- Rep. Kathleen Galvin-Halcro (D) HD 48, Minority Vice Chairman
101 RIVERVIEW DR E
GREAT FALLS, MT 59404-1547
Home: (406) 452-3356
KGALVINHALCRO2@AOL.COM

- Rep. Norman Ballantyne (D) HD 86
PO BOX 293
VALIER, MT 59486-0293
Home: (406) 279-3320
Bus: (406) 279-3613
MRB@3RIVERS.NET

- Rep. Norma Bixby (D) HD 5
PO BOX 1165
LAME DEER, MT 59043-1165
Home: (406) 477-6602
Bus: (406) 477-6602
NORMA@RANGEWEB.NET

- Rep. Gary Branae (D) HD 17
415 YELLOWSTONE AVE
BILLINGS, MT 59101-1730
Home: (406) 245-2127
Bus: (406) 252-4171
BRANAE@EARTHLINK.NET

- Rep. Nancy Rice Fritz (D) HD 69
1817 DANIEL DR
MISSOULA, MT 59802-4926
Home: (406) 549-6712
RICEFRITZ@MONTANA.COM

- Rep. Carol Gibson (D) HD 20
2518 BROADWATER AVENUE
BILLINGS, MT 59102-4608
Home: (406) 656-0384
JCGIBSON@IMT.NET

- Rep. Verdell Jackson (R) HD 79
555 WAGNER LN
KALISPELL, MT 59901-8079
Home: (406) 756-8344
VJACK@CENTURYTEL.NET

- Rep. Bob Lake (R) HD 60
PO BOX 2096
HAMILTON, MT 59840-2096
Home: (406) 363-4091
LAKEMILL@MONTANA.COM

- Rep. Joe McKenney (R) HD 49
1140 18TH AVE SW
GREAT FALLS, MT 59404-3426
Home: (406) 452-0326
Bus: (406)452-2051
JOEM@MONTANA.COM

- Rep. Clarice Schrumpf (R) HD 12
1317 YELLOWSTONE AVE
BILLINGS, MT 59102-5337
Home: (406)259-9752
CLARICE@WTP.NET

- Rep. Pat Wagman (R) HD 26
202 SOUTH 9TH ST
LIVINGSTON, MT 59047-2906
Home: (406)222-6265
Bus: (406)222-2061

- To get the name of your state representative, you can use HSLDA's
Legislative Toolbox at http://www.hslda.org/toolbox. If you do not
have Internet access, call the Montana legislature at (406) 444-
3064).

REASONS WE OPPOSE HOUSE BILL 274

This legislation is a bad idea because:

- Raising the compulsory attendance age will not reduce the dropout
rate. In fact, the two states with the highest high school completion
rates (Maryland, 94.5% and North Dakota, 94.7%) compel attendance
only to age 16, but the state with the lowest completion rate
(Oregon, 75.4%) compels attendance to age 18. (Figures are three-year
averages, 1996 through 1998.)

- Most states (28) only require attendance to age 16. Older children
unwilling to learn can cause classroom disruptions and even violence,
making learning harder for their classmates who truly want to learn.

- When California raised the age of compulsory attendance, unwilling
students were so disruptive that new schools had to be built just to
handle them and their behavior problems, all at the expense of the
taxpayer.

- In 1999, a similar bill (which did not pass) in Montana to increase
the compulsory attendance age had a fiscal impact of $4,000,000, a
conservative estimate of the cost to Montana taxpayers for the
current legislative proposal.

- This bill would require homeschool families to submit to two more
year of governmental red tape and threat of legal action in the event
of an alleged violation.

- It would restrict parents' freedom to decide if their 16-year-old
is ready for college or the workforce. Some 16-year-olds who are not
academically inclined benefit more from valuable work experience than
from being forced to sit in a classroom.

- While a student who had successfully completed the GED exam would
not be subject to the compulsory attendance law, the age at which a
student may take this exam may be raised by the Office of Public
Instruction from 16 to 18 as well.

- If the age for taking the GED is changed to 17 or 18, this could
prevent 16 year olds from taking the exam for college admission or
votech school as is presently permitted in Montana.

Thank you for standing with us against this encroachment on parental
freedom.

To review a copy of the bill text, go to:
http://data.opi.state.mt.us/bills/2003/billhtml/HB0274.htm

Sincerely,

Dewitt T. Black, III
HSLDA Senior Counsel


{{JoinAd}}
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The HSLDA E-lert Service is a service of:

Home School Legal Defense Association
P.O. Box 3000
Purcellville, Virginia 20134
Phone: (540) 338-5600
Fax: (540) 338-2733
E-mail: info@hslda.org
Web: http://www.hslda.org

----------------------------------------------------------------------
How To Subscribe:

- Subscribe to the HSLDA E-lert Service at our website:

https://secure.hslda.org/hslda/elert/account.asp?Process=Subscribe

- Or send an e-mail with name and complete mailing address to:

subscribe@hslda.org

----------------------------------------------------------------------
Subscription Information:

- You subscribed to the HSLDA E-lert Service as:

{{Email}}

- To unsubscribe from the HSLDA E-lert Service send an e-mail from
the e-mail address you want to unsubscribe to:

unsubscribe@hslda.org

- To change your e-mail address or make other changes to your
subscription, visit the HSLDA E-lert Service account web page at:

https://secure.hslda.org/hslda/elert/account.asp

----------------------------------------------------------------------
POSTMASTERS: This message is being sent to the most recent address we
have for our subscribers. If this is an invalid e-mail address or you
have other problems, please reply to webmaster@hslda.org.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
DISCLAIMER: This is considered a private and confidential message
from HSLDA to its bonafide HSLDA E-lert Service subscribers.
HSLDA cannot attest to the authenticity of copies posted, forwarded,
or sent by any party other than HSLDA.
----------------------------------------------------------------------
NOTE: Please do not reply or otherwise use this e-mail address;
hslda@hslda.org is for broadcast purposes only and is not intended to
receive incoming messages. We cannot reply to any e-mail sent to this
address. If you have comments or questions, please send e-mail to
info@hslda.org or call HSLDA at 540-338-5600. HSLDA members can also
e-mail staff directly through the Members website at
http://members.hslda.org/contact.asp. Thank you for your cooperation.
----------------------------------------------------------------------