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7/27/2007 2:19:51 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Texas Legislative Wrap-Up: It was a Good Year

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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Texas Legislative Wrap-Up: It was a Good Year

The 2007 session has ended and homeschool freedoms remain intact. We
praise the Lord for his continued protection during this session.

Texas attorney Tom Sanders, the Home School Legal Defense
Association's legislative counsel, worked tirelessly in Austin to
lobby on your behalf. He testified at various hearings and met with
many legislators. We coordinated all the elerts with him to target
legislators on certain important bills.

Thank you all for your tremendous response! Every time HSLDA sent out
an elert the legislators were swamped! Your vigilance made all the
difference. We could not have done it without you.

Here are some of the highlights from the 2007 legislative session:

--Compulsory Attendance:

Senator Judith Zaffirini's SB 52 would have expanded the jurisdiction
of the state over your children. This bill died in committee! Thank
you for your calls.

--Homeschool Access to Examinations:

Representative Charlie Howard's bill, HB 1844, was passed, opening the
door for homeschoolers to participate in Advanced Placement testing
and the PSAT examination through the public schools. This is good news
for homeschoolers. We are thankful for your calls.

--Rescinding Governor Perry's Executive Order:

Governor Perry issued an executive order to mandate immunization
against HPV to 11 year old girls. This was an affront to many of you
and an invasion of privacy. Much data show that the vaccination is not
even effective. Your calls helped fuel the reaction in the House and
Senate. A bill to rescind this order, HB 1098 passed the House and
Senate, effectively rescinding the unwise executive order.

--College Scholarships:

Thanks to your calls, HB 1250 was passed and signed into law by the
governor. Originally this bill would have allowed all private school
students to be eligible for both the Texas Grant Scholarship and the
B-On-Time Loan. At the last minute the language allowing access to the
Texas Grant Scholarship was taken out of the bill. However, the new
law will remove the term "accredited" from the academic requirement
for the B-On-Time Loan and thus allow all private school students
(including those in private schools in the home) to be academically
eligible, ending this discrimination against unaccredited homeschools
in Texas.

--Driver's License Requirements:

HB 1091 would have limited the rights of parents to teach their
children how to drive. This bill died in committee. We are thankful
for this outcome.

--Grandparent's Rights:

HB 3971 was introduced in order to protect parent's rights. Under
current Texas law, grandparents may sue for and receive court-ordered
visitation, over the parents' objection. Even if parents believe that
it would not be best for their children to see their grandparents,
grandparents could petition the court to force the parents to give the
grandparents visitation. This law has been held unconstitutional by
the Texas Supreme Court. The bill would have brought the law back in
line with the constitution, as well as restore the rights of parents.
Unfortunately HB 3971 did not pass. The language was then tacked onto
a senate bill which did pass, but it did not survive conference
committee. This issue will have to be revisited next legislative
session.

We are thankful that homeschoolers made progress this legislative
session. Due to your faithfulness and vigilance we were able to stop
bad bills and pass some bills that will benefit homeschoolers. Thank
you, once again, for your involvement and your efforts.

Sincerely,

Christopher J. Klicka
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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-> Will your children's inheritance retain its value?

If you pass on a legacy of freedom, your children and their
children's children will thank you. But freedom is never secure;
it must always be guarded. Membership with HSLDA is an investment
in the future that can be passed on to future generations of
families wanting to teach their children at home.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1944

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