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Date:
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1/28/2003 4:07:31 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Wyoming--Truancy Bill Defeated; Testing and Mandatory Kindergarten Bills Still Pending

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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January 28, 2003

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

On Monday, January 27, the Senate Education Committee killed Senator
Sessions' bill to increase the penalties for truancy. Senate File 109
would have raised the penalty from a maximum of twenty-five dollars
to a maximum of one thousand dollars. Five homeschoolers were present
at the committee meeting, and three had a chance to testify against
the bill. The committee voted against it four to one. The single vote
for S.F. 109 represented Senator Session's solitary support of her
bill.

Senator Sessions is aware of the outcry against her companion bill,
Senate File 110, which would change Wyoming from one of the best
states for homeschoolers, to one of the worst. S.F. 110 would force
homeschoolers to participate in the new statewide assessment system.
Each homeschool program would have to comply with Wyoming's Student
Performance Standards. Each homeschooler would be required to take
the new statewide assessments and, in addition, file a portfolio for
each child at the end of the first semester. If a homeschool child
fails to achieve the "proficiency levels" established by the
statewide assessment, the parent would be required to file a
"remediation plan."

HSLDA has received a message from Senator Hank Coe, Chairman of the
Senate Education Committee, saying that he does not intend to bring
S.F. 110 up for consideration because it appears to violate federal
law. However, calls are still needed immediately to the sponsor of
S.F. 110 and the committee members to strengthen Chairman Coe's
resolve. Please do not call the chairman's office.

Also still pending is House Bill 201, currently in the House
Education Committee. H.B. 201 would make kindergarten compulsory in
Wyoming. Although homeschoolers do not now have to file any paperwork
before their child turns seven, H.B. 201 would add roughly two more
years of compelled attendance.

ACTION REQUESTED

1. Call the voter hotline at 866-996-8683 and tell the operator, "I
oppose Senate File 110 and House Bill 201." The operator should ask
you what county you are calling from.

2. Please write a polite email to each member of the Senate Education
Committee that voted against Senate File 109 to thank them for voting
against Senate File 109. Your message might say, "Thank you for
supporting homeschool freedom by voting against Senate File 109. We
understand that S.F. 110 will not be brought up for consideration. If
it is, please vote against it as well since it violates federal law."
These committee members are:

Hank Coe, Chairman hcoe@wyoming.com
Jim Anderson Jamesda@msn.com
Larry Caller caller@senate.wyoming.com
Robert Peck bpeck@senate.wyoming.com

3. Please call Senator Sessions at 307-634-8314 or email her at
ksessions@senate.wyoming.com to ask her to withdraw S.F. 110. Be
polite, but remember that this bill is still a potential threat until
it is officially withdrawn.

4. Forward this email to your friends.

NOTE: The email address given in HSLDA's e-lert of 1/24/03 for
Senator Hank Coe, Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, has
been updated by the state legislature. The correct email address for
Senator Coe is hcoe@wyoming.com.

BACKGROUND

Visit our web site for more information on these bills:

Senate File 110: Required Academic Assessments for Homeschoolers
http://www.hslda.org/Legislation/State/wy/2003/wysf110/default.asp

Senate File 109: Increases Penalty for Truancy
http://www.hslda.org/Legislation/State/wy/2003/wysf109/default.asp

House Bill 201: Makes Kindergarten Mandatory
http://www.hslda.org/Legislation/State/wy/2003/wyhb201/default.asp

Thank you for your help against this dangerous legislation. If
homeschoolers work together, we can keep home education safe in
Wyoming.

Very truly yours,

Scott W. Somerville
HSLDA Staff Attorney

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