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9/19/2008 2:26:58 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
California--Your Freedoms Still Need Protection

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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California--Your Freedoms Still Need Protection

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

By now you have probably heard that the California Court of Appeals
reversed itself on August 8, 2008, ruling that homeschooling, under
the private school exemption, is legal. The court reversed its
previous decision handed down on February 28, which found that only
state certified teachers could legally homeschool in California.

Family Protection Ministries (FPM), Roy Hanson, Jim Davis, and Nathan
Pierce, legislative lobbyists on your part, played a key role in the
victory. Their lobbying efforts and organizational talents were
essential in bringing success to the homeschoolers in California
through this recent case.

Before I give the details on how they did it, it is important for you
to know that they worked almost around the clock from the date of the
original decision in February, until the ultimate victory on August 8.
As a result, their resources have been depleted and we, as the
homeschooling community in California, need to replenish their
treasury to ensure their continued lobbying efforts on your behalf.
They work full-time to represent homeschooling before the Legislature.
Their work will be more critical now than ever before.

Let me explain two areas of activity by FPM that brought about victory
on behalf of homeschoolers in California.

In the 1998 California legislative session, Roy and Jim were able to
get language attached to a law (The Montoya Act). This law requires
all private school employees to be subject to background checks and
requires fingerprints to be submitted to the Department of Justice.
Roy and Jim got the following language inserted in the statute that
required these background checks: "This section shall not apply to a
parent or legal guardian working exclusively with his or her own
child." Their motivation was to solidify the argument that
homeschools could legally operate as private schools in California.

The KEY reason for our victory in the Court of Appeals' August
reversal of its earlier bad decision was the finding by the court that
the legislative history of this amendment to the Montoya Act confirmed
the Legislature's apparent intent to accommodate homeschooling parents
through the private school provision.

Secondly, after the adverse decision came down in February, there were
well-meaning members of the California Legislature who expressed their
plans to fix the bad homeschool case decision by introducing
legislation. Through Roy, Jim and Nathan's tireless efforts, they
were able to convince legislators that this was premature and unwise.
In order to satisfy the frustration of some of those who wanted to fix
the problem legislatively, they worked with a legislator who wanted to
write a proposed resolution supporting homeschooling, condemning the
decision, and asking that it be reversed. This resolution was
introduced in the Legislature.

Roy, Jim and Nathan of FPM coordinated a unified effort by all the
statewide homeschool organizations to join in supporting the
pro-homeschooling resolution and opposing all homeschool legislation,
which would change the law. As a result of their actions, no
legislation was introduced and now we have a clear-cut court decision
in California confirming the legality of homeschooling via the private
school exemption.

FPM's success is only possible because of relationships developed over
many years with key officials in every branch of government. We
simply cannot thank FPM enough for what they have done for
homeschooling in the past, and now just recently, to preserve our
freedoms.

However, there is a major problem lurking that mandates that we
support FPM financially now! The court decision alluded to a lack of
definitive ability to regulate homeschooling by the state and
suggested that the Legislature might want to look at fixing this
problem with new legislation.

FPM's role is more important now than ever before. They must be fully
equipped with the resources necessary to monitor legislation that
could detrimentally affect homeschooling in California and be able to
mount an attack against any attempt to legislate homeschooling. We
know that any proposed legislation will mean more regulations and LESS
freedom than we currently have.

Therefore, I am asking you to give sacrificially and generously today
to FPM to ensure that we maintain our current level of freedom to
homeschool in California.

FPM needs both new regular monthly support and one-time gifts. I know
many of you have given to FPM in the past, and I thank you. Your
investment in this ministry continues to pay off with the preservation
of your freedom. Out of gratitude for what they have done in the past
to preserve our freedom, and based upon the continued necessity for
their existence in the future, please consider forwarding this request
to other homeschoolers. Those who give $40 or more each calendar year
will receive FPM's newsletter on a complimentary basis. Make your
tax-deductible gift payable to FPM, and mail it today to:

Family Protection Ministries
P.O. Box 730
Lincoln, CA 95648-0730

Thank you for your consideration of FPM's urgent need as they work
diligently to protect our freedoms.

God Bless,

Mike Smith
President, HSLDA

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