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4/4/2007 11:35:06 AM
Home School Legal Defense Association
New Hampshire--More Calls Needed to Resist State Control Over Homeschools!

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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April 4, 2007

New Hampshire--More Calls Needed to
Resist State Control Over Homeschools!

Dear HSLDA members and friends,

As you know, on March 15, the New Hampshire Senate voted to pass
Senate Bill 18, which would raise the age of compulsory attendance
from 16 to 18. On March 28, the bill was introduced in the House and
referred to the Education Committee.

We have been asking to you to contact your legislators in opposition
to this bill, and we need you to continue doing so. Calls and emails
are needed to persuade the House Education Committee to kill this
legislation.

Remember, there are many new representatives in the New Hampshire
House who are unfamiliar with this bill's flaws. It is critical that
you contact the committee members and inform them of the dangers of
Senate Bill 18.

ACTION REQUESTED

Please contact as many members of the House Education Committee
(listed below) as possible and ask them to oppose Senate Bill 18. In
your own words, give them the following message:

"Please recommend Senate Bill 18 as Inexpedient to Legislate ("ITL").
This bill is unnecessary, and even harmful to families, as it takes
away parental decision-making authority and wastes taxpayer money."

Though Senate Bill 18 will increase state control over homeschooled
children for an additional two years, it will also do the same for all
other New Hampshire students. Thus, it is not necessary to identify
yourself as a homeschooler.

Members of the House Education Committee:

Rep. Emma L. Rous (D), Chair
Phone: (603) 868-7030
Email: emma.rous@leg.state.nh.us

Kimberly C. Shaw (D), Clerk
Phone: (603) 882-2845
Email: kcshawed@aol.com

Rep. J. Timothy Dunn (D), Vice Chair
Phone: (603) 357-7993
Email: dunnbt@verizon.net

Rep. Charles B. Yeadon (D)
Phone: (603) 736-9087
Email: cyeaton@metrocast.net

Rep. Claudette R. Jean (D)
Phone: (603) 883-3824
Email: crjean2@verizon.net

Rep. Claire D. Clarke (D)
Phone: (603) 796-2268

Rep. Kimberley S. Casey (D)
Phone: (603) 772-8506
Email: caseycorps@aol.com

Rep. Barbara E. Shaw (D)
Phone: (603) 626-4681
Email: beshaw3@aol.com

Rep. Scott A. Merrick (D)
Phone: (603) 788-4311
Email: d.merrick@tufts.edu

Rep. Judith E. Day (D)
Phone: (603) 964-1816
Email: judy.day@leg.state.nh.us

Rep. James M. O'Neil (D)
Phone: (603) 424-3059
Email: jmoneil1@comcast.net

Rep. Judith T. Reeve (D)
Phone: (603) 524-2644
Email: reeverj@metrocast.net

Rep. Sharon M. Carson (R)
Phone: (603) 434-2489
Email: bladensfield@hotmail.com

Rep. Paul Ingbretson (R)
Phone: (603) 989-3092
Email: ingbretson_studio@yahoo.com

Rep. David W. Hess (R)
Phone: (603) 485-9027
Email: dave.hess@leg.state.nh.us

Rep. William J. Remick (R)
Phone: (603) 788-2444
Email: wremick@ne.rr.com

Rep. Nancy F. Stiles (R)
Phone: (603) 926-6467
Email: nancy.stiles@leg.state.nh.us

Rep. Karen K. McRae (R)
Phone: (603) 497-2186
Email: karen.mcrae@leg.state.nh.us

Rep. Elenore Casey Crane (R)
Phone: (603) 881-9048
Email: repcrane@comcast.net

Rep. Pamela G. Price (R)
Phone: (603) 888-4774
Email: pamela.price@leg.state.nh.us


BACKGROUND

Senate Bill 18 exempts from compulsory attendance those who have
earned a high school diploma or its equivalent, including a GED and a
letter or certificate documenting completion of a home education
program at the high school level. While the bill, if passed with the
amendment, would allow homeschoolers in New Hampshire to certify high
school completion prior to age 18, we are recommending that members
contact their representatives and ask them to reject the bill in its
entirety, as it gives the state additional control of children.

> Raising the compulsory attendance age from 16 to 18 would subject
New Hampshire home educators to the requirements of the homeschool
statute two years later than now required. (You do not need to share
this reason with your legislators.)

> Raising the compulsory attendance age erodes the authority of
parents who are in the best position to determine when their child's
formal education should end.

> 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.

> Raising the compulsory attendance age would restrict parents'
freedom to decide if their 16-year-old is ready for college or the
workforce. (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 upper age limit 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/docs/nche/Issues/E/Early_Education.asp

Thank you on behalf of all New Hampshire parents!


Michael P. Donnelly, Esq.
HSLDA Staff Attorney

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