From the HSLDA E-lert Service:


2/3/2003 2:46:59 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Florida--Calls Needed to Defeat Efforts Expanding Compulsory Attendance

From the HSLDA E-lert Service...

February 3, 2003

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

Each year Home School Legal Defense Association works to defeat
legislation that would expand the government's control over school-
age children. House Bill 9 raises the age of compulsory school
attendance from 16 years of age to 17, which applies to all children
in the state, including homeschoolers.

We oppose all attempts to expand the compulsory attendance age since
it increases the years the state will have jurisdiction over our
children. H.B. 9 was assigned to two Subcommittees on January 9,


1) Call the sponsor of H.B. 9 and deliver the following message in
your own words:

"Please withdraw H.B. 9. We oppose this bill because it will limit
parent's choice and disrupt the classroom by compelling disinterested
children to attend school."

Rep. Joe Negron, (850) 488 8832.

2) Call as many of the Appropriations Subcommittee representatives
listed as you can and express your opposition to H.B. 9:

"We urge you to vote against H.B. 9 as it would waste taxpayer's
money. Statistics demonstrate that compelling 17 year olds to attend
school does not improve graduation rates."

House Appropriations Subcommittee on Education:
David Simmons, chair, (850) 488-2231
Joe Pickens, vice chair, (850) 488-0665
Bruce Antone, (850) 488-0760
Ralph Arza, (850) 488-1683
Frank Attkisson, (850) 488-8992
Dennis Baxley, (850) 488-0335
Larry Cretul, (850) 488-0887
Faye Culp, (850) 488-2770
Mike Haridopolos, (850) 488-9720
Charlie Justice, (850) 488-9337
Bev Kilmer, (850) 488-2873
Suzanne Kosmas, (850) 488-6653
Stan Mayfield, (850) 488-0952
David Mealor, (850) 488-5843
Frank Peterman, (850) 488-0925
Ray Sansom, (850) 488-1170
Shelly Vana, (850) 488-4791


This bill would require homeschool families to submit to another 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.

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 (29) 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

Continue to check the HSLDA website for updates on H.B. 9 at:

Thank you for your efforts for freedom!


Christopher Klicka
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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Home School Legal Defense Association
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Purcellville, Virginia 20134
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