From the HSLDA E-lert Service:
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Date:
From:
Subject:

3/5/2007 3:27:56 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Florida: Legislature Poses Danger for Homeschoolers

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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Florida: Legislature Poses Danger for Homeschoolers

Dear HSLDA members and friends:

March 6, 2007, begins this year's legislative session. Many bills have
been pre-filed over the past few months, some of which pose a danger
to homeschoolers. The purpose of this email is to inform you that
these bills exist and to prepare you to respond if a future call to
action is needed.

We are hoping to stop some of these bills or amend them, but if they
are scheduled for a hearing, we will immediately send you an e-lert.

> S.B. 360 & H.B. 277: Compulsory Attendance Increase. These bills
would raise the compulsory attendance age from 16 to 18, requiring
children to attend school for two more years. In addition, H.B. 277
would tie renewal of a driver's license to attending school for these
two additional years. We oppose this expansion of the compulsory
attendance age since this will require those of you under the
homeschool law to keep your portfolio and to assess your children for
two more years. We have been opposing these bills throughout the
country as the National Education Association is pushing them this
year even more in than past years.

> H.B. 799: Expansion of Virtual Schools. This bill would remove the
requirement that to enroll in a virtual school the student must have
attended a public school the previous year.

Homeschool leaders and HSLDA are concerned about the virtual school
laws being passed around the country. Every time a public virtual
school program starts, private homeschoolers leave homeschooling to
join these programs.

Much freedom is lost as the homeschool movement slowly becomes
secularized. If your child is enrolled in one of these virtual
schools, the following occurs: (1) your children become public school
students; (2) your homeschool must use a secular public school
curriculum; (3) you must be supervised by a certified teacher from the
public school; (4) your children must be tested with the state
assessment; and (5) your house is open to home visits by school
officials and possibly social workers.

These programs pose a danger, particularly because early statistics
show that 80% of those who first enroll in a virtual school were
previously homeschoolers.

>S.B. 704: Private School Testing. This bill will require private
schools, before awarding a high school diploma, to have students earn
a passing score on the FCAT or score "on a standardized test [that
which is] concordant with passing scores on the FCAT."

Many homeschoolers have enrolled in 623 and 627 umbrella schools that
award high school diplomas. From our early understanding of this bill,
these private schools that cover the homeschoolers will have to
require the homeschool students to take the FCAT or score, on a
standardized test, equal to a passing score on the FCAT.

This is needless and unnecessary government red tape over private
schools. This bill should be opposed.

> S.B. 757: Driver's Education. Wayne Tully, the director of the
national Driver's Education Institute, has examined the bill and
believes this new requirement would not allow the parent to be the
primary teacher for driver's education training. Wayne Tully states
"studies have shown that this new legislation will cost plenty of
money and not reduce fatalities. Today, there is not even one study to
support this law. We need to use every resource we have to stop S.B.
757."

These are some of the bills that have been introduced which will
affect homeschoolers. Our plan is to monitor these bills and oppose
ones that harm homeschoolers. We will notify you when there is a need
for phone calls. Thank you for being ready to stand with us and
support freedom in Florida.

Sincerely,

Christopher J. Klicka
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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-> How many news articles did you read this morning over your
oatmeal?

We live in a world where concise information presented at the
right time can make a big difference in the outcome of important
legislative efforts. Yet it's tough to keep up with all the
issues that affect you. HSLDA does this for you in the areas that
affect your homeschool. Our emails and website enable you to
take quick, decisive action. Please consider becoming a part of
this team.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1923

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