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Date:
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2/26/2013 11:51:52 AM
Scott Woodruff--HSLDA
Calls Needed to Oppose Lowering Compulsory School Attendance Age from 7 to 5

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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Calls Needed to Oppose Lowering Compulsory
School Attendance Age from 7 to 5

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

Your calls are needed immediately to stop Illinois Senate Bill 1307,
which would expand state control over children and families in
Illinois. Current law requires school attendance beginning at age 7.
Senate Bill 1307 would lower this to age 5.

If this bill passes, homeschooling parents will have to comply with
Illinois compulsory attendance law a full two years earlier than now.
Two more years of your child's life would be under a government
mandate.

This bill would also result in an inevitable tax increase because
school districts would be required to offer kindergarten programs for
this new influx of children.

ACTION REQUESTED

Use our Legislative Toolbox at http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=17364
to find who your Illinois state senator is. (You will only be able to
find your state senator if you enter your Zip code). If he or she is
listed below as a member of the Senate Education Committee, please
call them before 1:00 p.m. tomorrow.

Please call the committee chairman and vice chair even if your senator
is not listed below.

Your message can be as simple as: "Please vote 'no' on SB 1307. It
would lower the age of compulsory school attendance from 7 to 5.
Parents, not the government, know when it's best for their young child
to start formal education. Taxes will go up for everyone to pay for
it."

It is not necessary to identify yourself as a homeschooler since this
would affect every Illinois parent.

Please forward this email to every family you know who is not a member
of HSLDA and urge them to contact the Senate Education Committee
members with the same message.

CONTACT INFORMATION--The Senate Education Committee members are:

William Delgado, Chair
(217) 782-5652

Kimberly A. Lightford, Vice Chair
(217) 782-8505

Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant
(217) 782-0052

Daniel Biss
(217) 782-2119

Bill Cunningham
(217) 782-5145

Iris Y. Martinez
(217) 782-8191

Julie A. Morrison
(217) 782-3650

Michael Noland
(217) 782-7746

Steve Stadelman
(217) 782-8022

David S. Luechtefeld, Minority Spokesperson
(217) 782-8137

Jason A. Barickman
(217) 782-6597

Karen McConnaughay
(217) 782-1977

Sue Rezin
(217) 782-3840

Chapin Rose
(217) 558-1006

BACKGROUND

Requiring children to attend school at age 5 is a very bad idea for
the following reasons:

1. SB 1307 forces children into school too soon. There are no
long-term replicable studies proving that mandating attendance at age
5 rather than 7 is better for the educational development of the
child. To the contrary, there is much research indicating that early
childhood education does not improve the child's potential for being a
better student in the future, because early gains disappear in a few
years. This is especially significant for boys, because their
cognitive and verbal skill development generally lags behind that of
girls at this age.

2. SB 1307 decreases beneficial parental contact with their children.
Two extra years of development outside of school can be critical for a
child at this early age. Carl Zinsmeister, adjunct research associate
at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research, says,
"Declining parental attachment is an extremely serious risk to
children today. The verdict of enormous psychological literature is
that time spent with the parent is the very clearest correlate of
healthy child development." Parents should continue to have the
authority to decide what is best for their children.

3. SB 1307 is based on faulty information. This attempt to bring
children into formal education programs at a younger age is based on
an erroneous assumption. Arthur Jensen, a learning psychologist, wrote
in the Harvard Educational Review in 1969 that Benjamin Bloom's
conclusion that people develop 50% of their mature intelligence by the
age of 4 is statistically unwarranted. In 1970, Nancy Bayley, a
University of California child psychologist whose data Bloom used,
pointed out that Bloom's theory was wrong because it was based on an
inadequate definition of intelligence. In spite of statements to the
contrary, there is no solid evidence that early education brings any
lasting or permanent educational benefit to a child. The conclusions
being drawn based on recent studies of child's brain development are
similar to the above faulty conclusions. The fact that a young child's
brain develops rapidly does not warrant the faulty conclusion that
more institutionalized and peer-dominated settings improve the child's
mental, emotional, and social development. There are studies that have
demonstrated the opposite.

4. SB 1307 would have an adverse financial impact on all Illinois
families. This increase in the kindergarten population will increase
the financial burden on the state's ability to fund its public
education programs. This will result in the need to increase state
education revenues. Increases in education revenues come either as
direct increases in taxes from citizens; approving and selling bonds,
which moves the tax burden to future generations; or transferring
funds from another part of the state budget.

Thank you for standing with us for freedom!

Sincerely,

Scott A. Woodruff,
Senior Counsel, HSLDA

P.S. We greatly value you and your support--it is a privilege to serve
you! If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you
consider taking a moment today to join or recommend us? Your support
for our work enables us to defend individual families and protect
homeschooling freedom for all. Join now:
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=17365

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-> Is customer service an art or a science?

For us, good customer service is both an art and a science
-it should appeal to our members and be effective. Consider what
our members say about us:

We're thankful for the support HSLDA membership provides us. We'd
never homeschool without them. We highly recommend HSLDA to all
homeschoolers. - North Tonawanda, NY

I cannot imagine our homeschool journey without HSLDA's strong
leadership, protection, and guidance. God bless HSLDA!
- Alta Loma, California

More reasons to join HSLDA...
http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=1940

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