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3/2/2010 2:49:39 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Maryland: Calls Needed to Oppose Compulsory Attendance Bill

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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March 2, 2010

Maryland--Calls Needed to Oppose Discriminatory
Compulsory Attendance Bill

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

Your calls are needed immediately to stop a bill that would subject
families to another two years of government regulation of their
education and discriminate against homeschool graduates. (I previously
emailed you about the companion bill in the Senate--this is the House
bill.)

House Bill 723 will be heard in the House Ways and Means Committee
tomorrow at 1 PM. It would extend the age at which compulsory school
attendance stops from 16 to 18.

Parents alone know whether it's best for their 16 and 17-year-olds to
stay in a formal education setting or follow some other path. One size
does not fit all when it comes to school attendance.

There is an exemption for students who graduate from a Maryland high
school, an out-of-state high school, or get a GED--but no exemption
for students who complete their secondary education in a homeschool
setting! This might spur a new wave of discrimination against our
young people who are seeking college admission and jobs--since it
doesn't treat our graduates as "real" graduates.

You may be told homeschoolers are exempt. Not so. The bill says, in
effect, that homeschool students are exempted if they keep on
complying with the homeschool law. This is meaningless. If one can
only be exempted from a law by complying with it, it is no exemption
at all.

ACTION REQUESTED:

Please call members of the committee to oppose the bill.

1. Make calls according to the first letter of your last name, as
indicated below.

2. Also call your own representative if he or she is listed below as a
committee member. Use our Legislative Toolbox to find your
representative: http://www.hslda.org/toolbox .

You can use the background information below to develop your own
thoughts, or your message can be as simple as:

"Please oppose HB 723. This multimillion dollar proposal will force
unwilling, unmotivated older teens to remain in classrooms where they
will cause disruption. Protect the right of parents to decide what
educational or vocational paths their 16-year-olds should follow."

It is not necessary to identify yourself as a homeschooling family,
since this bill undermines the rights of all parents.

CONTACT INFORMATION

If your last name begins A-D, call:
Chair: Sheila E. Hixson (410) 841-3469, (301) 858-3469
Vice Chair: Ann Marie Doory (410) 841-3476, (301) 858-3476
Joseph R. Bartlett (410) 841-3080, (301) 858-3080
Anne R. Kaiser (410) 841-3036, (301) 858-3036

If your last name begins E-H, call:
Kumar P. Barve (410) 841-3464, (301) 858-3464
Peter F. Murphy (410) 841-3247, (301) 858-3247
Joseph C. Boteler III (410) 841-3365, (301) 858-3365
LeRoy E. Myers, Jr. (410) 841-3321, (301) 858-3321; 1-800-492-7122,
ext. 3321 (toll free)

If your last name begins I-L, call:
Jon S. Cardin (410) 841-3833, (301) 858-3833
John A. Olszewski, Jr. (410) 841-3458, (301) 858-3458
D. Page Elmore (410) 841-3433, (301) 858-343
Craig L. Rice (410) 841-3090, (301) 858-3090

If your last name begins M-P, call:
C. William Frick (410) 841-3454, (301) 858-3454
Justin D. Ross (410) 841-3652, (301) 858-3652
Ron George (410) 841-3439, (301) 858-3439
Christopher B. Shank (410) 841-3636, (301) 858-3636

If your last name begins Q-T, call:
James W. Gilchrist (410) 841-3744, (301) 858-3744
Melvin L. Stukes (410) 841-3544, (301) 858-3544
Carolyn J. B. Howard (410) 841-3919, (301) 858-3919

If your last name begins U-Z, call:
Frank S. Turner (410) 841-3246, (301) 858-3246; 1-800-492-7122, ext.
3246 (toll free)
Jolene Ivey (410) 841-3478, (301) 858-3478
Jay Walker (410) 841-3581, (301) 858-3581

BACKGROUND

> The bill raises the compulsory age to 17 in 2012, and 18 in 2014.

> Raising the compulsory school attendance age will not reduce the
dropout rate. Some states with the lowest completion rates compel
attendance to age 18.

> More than 20 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.

> 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 school.

For more information on compulsory school attendance, please see our
memorandum at http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=3623 .

Thank you for standing with us for freedom.

Sincerely Yours,

Scott Woodruff
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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More reasons to join HSLDA...
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