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2/21/2007 2:50:46 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
South Dakota--Calls Needed to Stop Expansion of State Control over Your Children

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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February 21, 2007

South Dakota--Calls Needed to Stop Expansion
of State Control over Your Children

Dear HSLDA members and friends:

Your calls are again needed to stop a bill that would expand
compulsory school attendance to a student's 18th birthday.

This will require homeschoolers to notify the state two more years and
be under their supervision.

Senate Bill 199 is presently in the House Education Committee, and is
scheduled for a second hearing Thursday, February 22 at 10 a.m.

After being introduced by the Senate Education Committee, this bill
has been approved by the Senate and now awaits action in the House.
This hearing will be one of our last opportunities to prevent this
bill from being signed into law. The members of the House Education
Committee need to hear from families who oppose this expensive and
unnecessary expansion of state control over education. Legislators
need to know that families in South Dakota want to continue to make
their own decisions about work and school choices for children who
have reached the age of 16.

ACTION REQUESTED:

1. Please call as many members of the House Education Committee as
possible and urge them to vote against Senate Bill 199 with this
message:

"Please vote against Senate Bill 199 which would raise South Dakota's
compulsory school attendance age from 16 to 18. This bill restricts
the right of parents to choose educational or work options for their
children. This bill will also waste taxpayer dollars in requiring the
attendance of students who are unwilling to remain in school."

Please do not identify yourself as a homeschooling family, since this
issue is broader than just homeschooling.

The contact information for the members of the House Education
Committee is as follows:

Rep. Jim Bradford
Capitol: 605-441-8805

Rep. Michael Buckingham
Capitol: 605-224-0411

Rep. Mark DeVries
Capitol: 605-773-3851

Rep. Burt Elliott
Capitol: 605-773-3851

Rep. Charlotte Gilson
Capitol: 605-224-6877

Rep. Tom Hackl
Capitol: 605-773-3851

Rep. Phyllis M. Heineman, (Chair)
Capitol: 605-224-6877

Rep. Thomas R. Hills
Capitol: 605-224-4140

Rep. Ed McLaughlin (Vice-Chair)
Capitol: 605-224-0411

Rep. Al Novstrup
Capitol: 605-773-3851

Rep. Ryan P. Olson
Capitol: 605-773-3851

Rep. Bill Thompson
Capitol: 605-773-3851

Rep. Thomas J. Van Norman
Capitol: 605-773-3851

Rep. Keri K. Weems
Capitol: 605-224-4200

Rep. Hal G. Wick
Capitol: 605-773-3851

2. Please contact your own representative and voice your opposition to
Senate Bill 199. To find the name of your state representative, use
HSLDA's Legislative Toolbox at http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=3781
.

To view the text of Senate Bill 199, please visit:
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=3782

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 or the work force. (Some 16-year-olds who are not
academically inclined benefit more from valuable work experience than
from being forced to sit in a classroom.)

> 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=3623 .

Sincerely,

Scott A. Woodruff, Esq.
HSLDA Staff Attorney

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-> Have you ever yelled into the wind, only to hear the sound of your
voice blown back at you?

It's hard to be heard in the midst of a storm. Trying to influence
federal legislation is much like yelling to be heard while
standing in a fierce wind. Yet when 80,000 voices join together,
they become a powerful force that cannot be drowned out.
Join HSLDA to be heard above the tempests that threaten homeschool
freedoms.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1939

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