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3/16/2004 1:09:22 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Nevada--Homeschoolers Win Victory

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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March 16, 2004


Nevada--Homeschoolers Win Victory


Dear HSLDA members and friends:

Lyon County recently decided to revamp its policy regarding
homeschooler participation in extracurricular activity.
Unfortunately, the proposed policy did not follow the plain meaning
of existing homeschool equal access law, but essentially barred
homeschoolers from participating in many activities they are eligible
for under existing law.

The law clearly states that homeschoolers shall be allowed to
participate in classes and extracurricular activities in the local
public school, with only a few exceptions.

The Nevada Equal Access law, NRS 392.070, requires that the board of
trustees of each school district shall provide programs of special
education and related services for homeschooled children. The
programs of special education and related services required by this
section must be made available.

This means homeschoolers can participate in essentially all classes
and extracurricular activities offered by Lyon. The only exceptions
are where the child does not meet the qualifications or there is no
physical room for the homeschooled child.

The Lyon policy essentially reversed existing law by not allowing
homeschool participation in most cases, with only a few exceptions.

In private and public meetings the Nevada Homeschool Network offered
to be part of the drafting of this new policy, but was rebuffed.
Numerous times they asked to review the policy before it was
finalized.

The Nevada Homeschool Network was finally able to schedule a meeting
with the Lyons County School Board to discuss the proposed policy.

HSLDA Senior Counsel Chris Klicka sent a letter to the school board
on behalf of Nevada homeschoolers. In the letter he explained that
the Nevada equal access law is simple and straightforward, and that
the proposed policy does not conform to existing law. Klicka
encouraged the Lyon School Board to work with the Nevada Homeschool
Network to create a policy for homeschoolers according to the law.

Several homeschoolers spoke at the meeting and Frank Shnorbus, of the
Nevada Homeschool Network, read Chris Klicka's letter. A rough draft
of a policy acceptable to homeschoolers was proposed as an
alternative.

As a result, the Lyons School Board finally agreed to scrap their bad
policy. A committee consisting of public school administrators,
public school parents, and homeschool parents, with assistance from
members of the Nevada Homeschool Advisory Council, is to be formed to
write a policy which could then be presented to the Lyon School
Board.

We expect that the new policy will be much more acceptable to
homeschoolers and are grateful for the homeschoolers who got involved
in this situation to prevent unlawful discrimination against
homeschoolers. We hope it will be used as a model around the state.


Sincerely,

Chris Klicka
Senior Counsel
Home School Legal Defense Association



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