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Date:
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4/7/2003 5:13:17 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Oregon--Committee to Vote on Homeschool Bill Tomorrow

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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April 7, 2003

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

On April 3, 2003 the Senate Education Committee conducted a hearing
on Senate Bill 761, at which time approximately 120 homeschoolers
packed the hearing room and overflowed into a second room. A lot of
favorable testimony was presented in support of the bill, but time
ran out before the Committee was able to conduct a vote. The
Committee with meet again tomorrow, April 8, 2003, to vote. Your
calls are needed to members of the Committee as they decide the fate
of this bill.

This legislation would repeal the notice and testing requirements of
the homeschool law. Parents would be free to teach their children at
home without any contact whatsoever with public school officials.

REQUESTED ACTION

We urge you to call the members of the Oregon Senate Education
Committee listed below with this message:

"Please vote for Senate Bill 761 which will relieve homeschooling
parents from unnecessary state oversight. Home educators have earned
the right to more freedom after demonstrating their success under the
law for the past 18 years."

Members of Senate Education Committee:

Senator Charles Starr, Chair Bill sponsor - no need to call
Senator Ryan Deckert, Vice-Chair 503-986-1714
Senator Ted Ferrioli 503-986-1730
Senator Bill Morrisette 503-986-1706

REASONS WE SUPPORT THIS LEGISLATION:

Senate Bill 761 would make the following changes in the current law:

- expand the educational options for homeschoolers by providing that
a child may be educated by the parent or legal guardian or "at the
direction of" a parent or legal guardian, thereby permitting parents
or guardians to appoint someone else to conduct some or all of the
instruction;

- repeal the requirement that parents notify the public school
officials of their decision to homeschool;

- repeal the testing requirements of the homeschool law, except for
students participating in interscholastic activities at a public
school; and

- remove the requirement that the education service district or
school district determine that a child under 18 is being homeschooled
in order to get a driver's license.

BACKGROUND

Oregon first enacted a homeschool law in 1985, approximately 18 years
ago. Since that time, numerous efforts have been made to enact
amendments providing more freedom to parents. The most recent change
in the law occurred in 1999 when significant progress was made in
reducing state oversight of homeschooling. Senate Bill 761 represents
a continuation of legislative efforts to gain more freedom for
parents.

If Senate Bill 761 is enacted, Oregon will join a growing majority of
states requiring no standardized testing of homeschooled students.
Further, public school officials will have no record of children
being homeschooled, because parents will not be required to even
notify public school officials of their decision to conduct home
instruction. Oregon has the potential through this legislation to go
from a state with a good homeschool law to a state with a great
homeschool law. Let's work hard together to get this done this year.

To see more information on this and other bills HSLDA is monitoring
in Oregon, visit our website at:
http://www.hslda.org/hs/state/OR/default.asp

Sincerely,

Dewitt T. Black, III
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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