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1/27/2011 5:11:11 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
New Hampshire: HB 301--Best Plan for Homeschoolers

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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New Hampshire: HB 301--Best Plan for Homeschoolers

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends

New Hampshire homeschoolers have defended themselves valiantly from
attempts in recent years to impose onerous restrictions on
homeschooling; battles which prompted HSLDA to turn New Hampshire
"red" on its national map of homeschool laws to show its "hostile
legislative climate." The most recent election has, however, improved
this "climate," resulting in a number of proposals to improve New
Hampshire's 20-year-old homeschool law, New Hampshire Revised Statutes
Annotated 193-A ("RSA 193-A").

HSLDA supports House Bill 301, sponsored by Representative Jim
Parison, and we encourage our members to do the same.

HB 301 dramatically improves New Hampshire's homeschool law. It
creates a simpler homeschool law that recognizes parents' fundamental
rights, provides for straightforward one-time notification and
explicitly protects homeschoolers' privacy. The bill removes required
assessments and all Department of Education (DOE) involvement in home
education. In light of the DOE's removal, the bill creates a careful
legislative framework to protect parents from unwanted encounters with
DCYF, family courts, truancy officers and school officials. Unlike
some other proposals, the bill also removes the state's authority to
challenge parents with educational neglect, terminate a home education
program or force children to attend a school.

HB 301 affords homeschooling parents the highest levels of due process
protections. With a sponsor's amendment, Representative Parison has
taken necessary action to remove certain language mistakenly retained
during the bill drafting process. This mistaken language created a
second, misdemeanor level, offense if parents were found guilty of
"purposely failing" to educate their children. The amendment removes
this language allowing the state to charge parents only with a
violation when there is probable cause and with a burden of proof that
is "beyond a reasonable doubt."

The bill is carefully drafted to create greater flexibility and
freedom and reduce bureaucracy; HSLDA is convinced that New Hampshire
homeschoolers will be well served by supporting HB 301.

Representative Parison is a homeschooling father of six, a member of
the CheNH board and has served for six years as CheNH's president. He
has been at the "tip of the spear" fighting for New Hampshire
homeschoolers these past four years. Representative Parison has
consulted with state homeschool organizations and leaders, members of
the Home Education Advisory Council, homeschooling parents and
supportive state representatives, including his co-sponsors
Representatives Paul Mirski and Charles Sova, and senators Raymond
White and Sharon Carson.

ACTION REQUESTED

There is no action requested at this time. HSLDA anticipates that
there may be action needed to assure passage of this legislation.
HSLDA encourages our members to become informed about the issues being
debated in order to be prepared to support HB 301 when it is heard in
the education committees and debated on the floors of the House and
Senate.

HSLDA will continue to track legislation that may affect homeschooling
in New Hampshire. We encourage our members to stay informed and
prepare to participate in the debate about what laws will be best for
New Hampshire homeschoolers. A detailed memo on why HSLDA supports HB
301 can be found here: http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=10119 For
information on all legislation affecting the homeschool law, visit:
www.hslda.org/nh.

Thank you for your support of homeschooling freedom in the Granite
State. As a former New Hampshire resident and homeschooler, it is a
great privilege to serve you!

Sincerely,

Michael P. Donnelly

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-> Who are the nation's best lobbyists?

We don't know that this has ever been determined; but we do know
that HSLDA's Federal Relations Department is the only
national organization lobbying on behalf of homeschoolers on
Capitol Hill.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1102

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