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Date:
From:
Subject:

1/14/2013 2:27:52 PM
Mike Donnelly--HSLDA
Wyoming: Calls Needed to Protect Parental Freedom

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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Wyoming: Calls Needed to Protect Parental Freedom

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

Your calls are needed urgently to stop a bill that would raise the
ending age for compulsory school attendance in Wyoming from 16 (or
completion of 10th grade) to 18 (or completion of 12th grade). Senate
File 96 has already passed the Senate Education Committee. The next
step for this bill is a vote on the floor of the Senate, which will
likely take place tomorrow. Call your senator today to make sure your
voice is heard in opposition to this bill!

The supporters of this legislation in the Wyoming Legislature appear
to believe that the state, rather than parents, knows what is best for
their children. They argue that such an action would increase the
graduation rate. In reality there is no evidence that this is true,
and raising the age imposes significant burdens on our community as
well as on the state budget, its school system, teachers and
administrators.

If SF 96 passes, we homeschoolers would suddenly be required to submit
a curriculum outline for an additional two years--until a student
turns 18 or graduates. Those who do not continue filing notification
during the additional time could be charged with truancy by school
districts. Increasing the age of compulsory school attendance further
restricts the right of parents to decide what is best for their
children who are 16 and 17 years old and who may prefer to work or
pursue some alternative form of education.

Requested Action

1. Please call your Wyoming state senator immediately and ask him or
her to oppose the bill. Visit our Legislative Toolbox
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=14159 and type in your ZIP Code to
find out who your senator is and his or her contact information.

In your own words, convey the message that you oppose raising the age
of compulsory attendance in Wyoming because it will:

> Not accomplish the intended objective of increasing high school
completion rates;
> Create classroom difficulties overburdening teachers and
administrators;
> Place new and unnecessary burdens and restriction on the liberty of
all parents;
> Unnecessarily restrict the liberty of 16-year-olds who, with their
parent's permission, wish to enroll in post-secondary education or
pursue a vocational calling; and
> Redirect funds needed from other more important programs.

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

3. Forward this email on to all of your friends, and ask them to call
their senator as well.

Background

Statistics show that raising the compulsory attendance age will not
reduce the dropout rate. In fact, the two states with the highest high
school completion rates, Maryland at 94.5% and North Dakota at 94.7%,
compel attendance only to age 16. The state with the lowest completion
rate (Oregon: 75.4%) compels attendance to age 18. (Figures are
three-year averages, 1996 through 1998.)

Even with possible exemption language, passing this bill would
restrict parents' freedom to decide if their 16-year-old is ready for
college or the workforce. (Some 16-year-olds who are not academically
inclined benefit more from valuable work experience than from being
forced to sit in a classroom.)

Another significant impact of expanding the compulsory attendance age
is an inevitable tax burden to pay for more classroom space and
teachers to accommodate the additional students compelled to attend
public schools. When California raised the age of compulsory
attendance, unwilling students were so disruptive that new schools had
to be built just to handle them and their behavior problems, all at
the expense of the taxpayer.

A study by Cornell University on raising the age of compulsory school
attendance found that there was no correlation between passing a law
to raise the age of compulsory attendance and high school completion
rates. The study shows that specific programs targeting at-risk youth
can help improve completion rates, but a law raising the age of
attendance does not.

For more information, please see our Issues Library entry
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=13556 on compulsory school
attendance.

Thank you for your calls on behalf of freedom in Wyoming.

Sincerely,

Michael P. Donnelly, Esq.
HSLDA Staff Attorney

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-> How many of your friends would pay your legal fees?

As a member of HSLDA, you have 80,000 families standing with you
to protect and advance homeschool freedoms in the United States
and foreign countries.

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1106

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