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6/20/2011 3:29:40 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
Maine: Call By Thursday to Stop Compulsory School Age Expansion

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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Maine: Call By Thursday to Stop Compulsory School Age Expansion

Dear Maine HSLDA Members and Friends:

Your calls are needed immediately to stop a bill that would lower the
starting age for compulsory school attendance in Maine from 7 to 6 and
raise the ending age from the 17th to 18th birthday.

LD 1503 would take away your freedom to decide whether school or some
other path is best for your 17-year-old to follow. It would take away
your freedom to decide if your 6-year-old is ready for mandatory
education. And it would result in higher taxes as unprepared
6-year-olds and unwilling older students are forced to stay in
schools.

The bill also takes away the exception that currently allows a student
who has graduated from high school to be exempted from compulsory
attendance.

The bill is currently before the Joint Standing Committee on
Appropriations and Financial Affairs, which can kill it by giving it
no funding.

REQUESTED ACTION

1. Call members of the committee according to the first letter of your
last name (see list below). Ask them to give no funding to the bill.

2. Your message can be as simple as:

"Please give no funding to LD 1503. Parents, not state officials, know
whether their young adult should pursue formal education or some other
preparation for life responsibilities. The extra cost of forcing
unwilling young adults into a formal school setting should not be
added to our tax burden. Parents know best whether a 6-year-old is
ready for school."

3. If your senator or representative is on the committee, call him or
her as well. Use our Legislative Toolbox to determine who your
senators and representatives are.
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=11565

This bill would undermine the freedom of all parents. It is not
necessary for you to identify yourself as a homeschooler.

Contact Information--Committee Members

If your last name begins with A through E, call these members:

Senator Richard W. Rosen (R-Hancock), Chair
Home Telephone: (207) 469-3779
rrosen113@aol.com

Senator Roger J. Katz (R-Kennebec)
Home Telephone: (207) 485-2394
RKatz@lipmankatzmckee.com

Senator Dawn Hill (D-York)
Home Telephone: (207) 337-3689
SenDawn.Hill@Legislature.Maine.Gov

If your last name begins with F through J, call:

Representative Patrick S. A. Flood (R-Winthrop), Chair
Home Telephone: (207) 395-4915
RepPatrick.Flood@legislature.maine.gov

Representative Tom J. Winsor (R-Norway)
Home Telephone: (207) 527-2233
RepTom.Winsor@legislature.maine.gov

Representative Kathleen D. Chase (R-Wells)
Home Telephone: (207) 646-2118
Cell Phone: (207) 468-9747
RepKathleen.Chase@legislature.maine.gov

If your last name begins with K through O, call:

Representative Tyler Clark (R-Easton)
Home Telephone: (207) 488-2633
Cell Phone: (207) 227-6971
RepTyler.Clark@legislature.maine.gov

Representative Kenneth Wade Fredette (R-Newport)
Home Telephone: (207) 368-4242
fredlaw@myfairpoint.net

Representative Dennis L. Keschl (R-Belgrade)
Home Telephone: (207) 495-2973
Cell Phone: (207) 441-3701
RepDennis.Keschl@legislature.maine.gov

If your last name begins with P through S, call:

Representative Margaret R. Rotundo (D-Lewiston)
Home Telephone: (207) 784-3259
mrotundo@bates.edu

Representative John L. Martin (D-Eagle Lake)
Home Telephone: (207) 444-5556
RepJohn.Martin@legislature.maine.gov

If your last name begins with T through Z, call:

Representative David C. Webster (D-Freeport)
Home Telephone: (207) 865-4311
RepDavid.Webster@legislature.maine.gov

Representative Sara R. Stevens (D-Bangor)
Home Telephone: (207) 942-8900
RepSara.Stevens@legislature.maine.gov

Background

Not all 17-year-olds belong in a formal school setting. Some would be
better off in a work training program, apprenticeship, obtaining
valuable work experience, etc. This decision belongs to parents, not
state officials.

Pushing unwilling older students into the classroom will disrupt the
other students who truly want to learn. Since many older students have
the size and strength of adults, classrooms could become even more
violent.

Raising the compulsory age does not help young people. Some of the
states with the highest graduation rates have the lowest compulsory
attendance cut-off age. Most states have a compulsory attendance
cut-off age of 16 or less.

Taxes would inevitably rise to pay for more classroom space and
teachers. When California raised the upper age limit of compulsory
attendance, taxpayers were forced to pay for the building of new
schools just to handle the older, unwilling students and their
behavior problems.

For more information on compulsory attendance, and why many
6-year-olds are better off waiting a year before school, please see
our memorandum at http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=11566 .

Thank you for your calls on behalf of freedom in Maine!

Sincerely,

Scott Woodruff
HSLDA Senior Counsel

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More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1100

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