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2/16/2007 3:33:39 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
New Mexico: Calls Needed to Stop Expansion of State Control of Our Homeschools

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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February 16, 2007

New Mexico: Calls Needed to Stop Expansion of State Control of Our
Homeschools

Dear New Mexico Members and Friends,

Senate Bill 561 is going to be heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee
at 1:30 this afternoon. The bill has already passed the Senate
Education Committee.

This bill and its companion bill, House Bill 184, would expand
compulsory attendance from ages 17 to 18 years of age.

This would require you to notify the state of your homeschooling and
have your homeschool child under the state's jurisdiction an extra
year.

REQUESTED ACTION

We urge you to contact the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee
and give them this message:

"Please vote against S.B. 561. It would force unwilling disruptive
students into the classroom. It only serves as a waste of taxpayers
money."

You do not need to mention that you homeschool.

Please try to call as many members of the committee listed below as
possible:

Senator Cisco McSorley, Chair
505-986-4485

Senator Richard C. Martinez, Vice Chair
505-986-4389

Senator William H. Payne
505-986-4276

Senator Rod Adair
505-986-4385

Senator Kent L. Cravens
505-986-4391

Senator John T.L. Grubesic
505-986-4260

Senator Clinton D. Harden
505-986-4369

Senator Linda M. Lopez
505-986-4737

Senator Lidio G. Rainaldi
505-986-4310

Senator Michael S. Sanchez
505-986-4727

BACKGROUND

Reasons For Opposing Higher Compulsory Attendance Age:

> 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. (These figures are three-year
averages, 1996 through 1998.)

> Most states (28) only require attendance to age 16. Older children
who do not want to learn cause classroom discipline problems,
disruptions, and violence, making learning harder for those who truly
want to learn.

> When California raised the age of compulsory attendance, the
disruption caused by unwilling students was so significant that new
schools had to be set up just to handle these students and their
behavior problems, all at the expense of the taxpayer.
Unwilling students who are forced back into the classroom are unlikely
to benefit from one year of additional schooling.

> It would require homeschool families to submit to one more year of
governmental red tape, and be exposed to one more year of the threat
of legal action or subpoena in the event of an accusation of a
violation.

> It would take away the parental freedom to decide if a 17-year-old
is ready for college or the workforce. Some 17-year-olds who are not
academically inclined benefit more from valuable work experience than
being forced to sit in a classroom.

For more information on compulsory attendance, please see our
memorandum at
http://www.hslda.org/docs/nche/Issues/E/Early_Education.asp

Sincerely,

Christopher J. Klicka, Esq.
Senior Counsel

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