From the HSLDA E-lert Service:


3/26/2003 1:10:26 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Florida--More Calls Needed to Stop Bill to Raise Compulsory Attendance Age

From the HSLDA E-lert Service...

March 26, 2003

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

The Florida House Appropriations Subcommittee on Education voted to
pass the House Bill 9 despite your phone calls and the large price
tag. Maybe they have not yet gotten enough calls. Please take a few
minutes to make a difference.

H.B. 9 raises the age of compulsory school attendance from 16 years
of age to 17, which applies to all children in the state, including

H.B. 9 is a very costly expansion of the government's control over
school age children. According to the House of Representatives Staff
Analysis, H.B. 9 will cost taxpayers approximately $176,998,610

We now need your calls to flood the House Education K-20 Subcommittee
on Pre-K Through 12. In nearly every other state, homeschoolers have
defeated similar attempts to raise or lower the compulsory attendance
ages. Let's not have Florida be an exception!


Call as many of the subcommittee members as possible from March 26
until April 4 and express your opposition to H.B. 9 saying:

"We urge you to vote against H.B. 9 as it would waste taxpayer's
money to the tune of 177 million dollars. Statistics demonstrate that
compelling 17 year olds to attend school does not improve graduation
rates. We also oppose this bill because it will limit parental rights
and disrupt the classroom by compelling disinterested children to
attend school."

You do not need to identify yourself as a homeschooler, just as a
concerned taxpayer and parent.

Subcommittee on Pre-K Through 12:

Bev Kilmer (R) Chair, (850) 488-2873
Rafael Arza (R) Vice Chair, (850) 488-1683
Ray Sansom (R), (850) 488-1170
Larry Cretul (R), (850) 488-0887
Pat Patterson (R), (850) 488-9873
Faye B. Culp (R), (850) 488-2770
John K. Stargel (R), (850) 488-2270
Bill Galvano (R), (850) 488-4086
Shelley Vana (D), (850) 488-4791
Mary Brandenburg (D), (850) 488-0260
Curtis B. Richardson (D), (850) 488-1798
Loranne Ausley (D), (850) 488-0965
Stan Jordan (R), (850) 488-4388
Joe H. Pickens (R), (850) 488-0665
Edward L. Jennings (D), (850) 488-5794
Dennis K. Baxley (R), (850) 488-0335
David J. Mealor (R), (850) 488-5843
Gayle B. Harrell (R), (850) 488-8749
Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall (D), (850) 488-0260
Frank Attkisson (R), (850) 488-8992
Kenneth Allan Gottlieb (D), (850) 488-0145
Eleanor Sobel (D), (850) 488-0465
Frederick C. Brummer (R), (850) 488-2023
Gustavo A. Barreiro (R), (850) 488-9930
Frank Farkas (R), (850) 488-5719
Heather Fiorentino (R), (850) 488-5522


1) 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.

2) It would restrict parents' freedom to decide if their homeschooled
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.

3) 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.)

4) 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.

5) 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

Check the HSLDA website for the latest information on H.B. 9 at:

Thank you for your efforts for freedom!


Christopher Klicka
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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