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7/13/2004 3:48:32 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
New York--Urgent! Calls Needed to Stop Bill Raising the Compulsory Attendance Age!

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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New York--Urgent! Calls Needed to Stop Bill Raising the Compulsory
Attendance Age!


July 13, 2004


Dear HSLDA members and friends:

We need your calls immediately to stop Assembly Bill 1892-A and to
prevent every school district in New York from being able to raise the
compulsory attendance age from 16 to 17. Your calls earlier this year
stopped this bill in the Senate, but in last few days of the regular
session it was slipped through. The bill now goes to the Governor to
be signed. With your calls we can still stop this bill.

If enacted into law, Assembly Bill 1892-A would allow your district to
require minors from sixteen to seventeen years of age, who are not
employed, to attend school--this means your school district would have
control over your homeschool for another year. One more year of
filling out IHIP forms!

Please contact Governor Pataki and voice your opposition to this bill.
We believe that pressure from homeschoolers will cause him to veto the
bill. If Governor Pataki vetoes the bill we will have more leverage to
pass the homeschool freedom bills, which are still in the legislature,
by demonstrating that homeschoolers can make a difference.


REQUESTED ACTION

1) Please contact Governor Pataki or his staff with this message:

"Please veto Assembly Bill 1892-A which was sent to the Governor's
office on July 8, 2004. Expanding compulsory attendance would only
waste taxpayers' money, force unwilling, disruptive students into the
classroom, and take away the right of parents to decide their
children's future education."

You do not need to identify yourself as a homeschooler.

You can contact the office of Governor Pataki at:
(518) 474-8390 or (212) 681-4580

Or visit http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=1670 to send an e-mail to
the Governor.

You can also contact the Lieutenant Governor, Mary O. Donohue at:
(518) 474-4623 or (212) 681-4532

Or visit http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=1671 to send an e-mail.

You can also contact the Deputy Director of Legislative Affairs,
Andrea Maranville at:
(518) 486-6672


BACKGROUND

- Raising the compulsory attendance age will not reduce the dropout
rate. In fact, the two states with the highest high school completion
rates, Maryland at 94.5% and North Dakota at 94.7%, compel attendance
only to age 16. The state with the lowest completion rate (Oregon:
75.4%) compels attendance to age 18. (Figures are three year averages,
1996 through 1998.)

- Twenty-nine states 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.

- It would restrict parents' freedom to decide if their 16 year old is
ready for college.

- Another significant impact of expanding the compulsory attendance
age would be an inevitable tax increase to pay for more classroom
space and teachers to accommodate the additional students compelled to
attend public schools. 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 taxpayer.

For more information on compulsory attendance, please see our
memorandum at http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=1672


Sincerely,

Thomas J. Schmidt
HSLDA Staff Attorney



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