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5/27/2004 4:39:24 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Virginia--Governor Vetoes Homeschool Freedom Bill

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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May 27, 2004


Virginia--Governor Vetoes Homeschool Freedom Bill


Dear HSLDA members and friends,

Governor Warner vetoed the homeschool bill, HB 675. (His veto message
is below).

He had no logical reason.

The statistics all show that homeschooled children, including parents
with high school diplomas, score 20 to 30 points above the national
average.

Forty-one states have no qualifications for homeschooling parents.
Seven others only require parents to have a high school diploma or
GED.

The General Assembly overwhelming passed HB 675 and overwhelmingly
defeated Governor Warner's amendment to HB 675.

The Lt. Governor, key Democrats, and Senator Potts all urged the
Governor to sign HB 675.

The Virginia Education Association even stayed neutral on this bill.

Only Warner's Secretary of Education opposed this bill. When she
testified before the Senate committee, she didn't present a logical
reason for her opposition. It appeared that she simply did not trust
parents.

If you want to contact Governor Warner to express your disappointment
you can call 804-786-2211 and press 0 for a live person in Constituent
Services.

Or you can email the Governor through his Web site:
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=1586

Thank you for all your calls and sacrifices to get us so close to
passage! We can rest assured that God is in control!

We have only just begun to fight.


Sincerely,

Chris Klicka
HSLDA Senior Counsel



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From Governor Warner, May 21, 2004:

Home Schooling
HB 675

"I have vetoed House Bill 675. This bill would have permitted a parent
without a college degree to educate his children at home, without even
an approved program of study for teaching the child. Under current
Virginia law, a parent may educate his children at home if he meets
one of several criteria: he has a college degree, he is a certified
teacher with qualifications prescribed by the Board of Education, he
has enrolled the children in a correspondence course approved by the
Superintendent of Public Instruction, or he provides a program of
study or curriculum approved by the local school superintendent. In
addition, parents who have a religious exemption need no other
qualification to home school. I proposed an amendment to this bill
which would have allowed a parent without a college degree to home
school if he has achieved an acceptable score on a standardized test -
PRAXIS I or SAT I (at levels determined by the Department of
Education) or above a 50% pass score on another test approved by the
Department of Education. My amendment was designed to increase
flexibility desired by the home schooling community while ensuring
that the parent is able to educate his children.

Through the Federal No Child Left Behind Act, we have raised the
standards for our public school teachers. This bill would effectively
lower the criteria to home school, and thus retreat from the needed
assurance of an adequate education for every child.

I am committed to high standards for our teachers as well as our home
educators. Accordingly, I have vetoed this bill."




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