Originally Sent: 5/30/2014

From the HSLDA e-lert service…
Home School Legal Defense Association

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Urgent Action Needed to Remove Harmful Language from Legislation

Homeschooling in New Hampshire.

Please call today.



HSLDA staff attorney Mike Donnelly helps protect homeschool freedom in your community.
Read more >>

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,

We need you to take action today to protect homeschooling families from unwarranted government intrusion. The Ohio Senate has made changes to the mid-year budget review bill (Am.Sub.H.B. 487) that will create more bureaucracy, confusion and potentially result in more discrimination against homeschool graduates seeking admission to higher education in Ohio.

HB 487 contains language that would require a homeschooling parent to get a notarized affidavit that contains the grades and coursework of his or her child just to be considered for admission to state colleges.

HSLDA and CHEO have been working with the Ohio Legislature to solve the problem of discrimination against homeschool graduates in Ohio, but the Senate’s amendment to language that might have been helpful has made the situation potentially worse. Because the House did not agree with the Senate’s proposed changes a conference committee has been created to work out the differences. Legislators need to hear from you today as the conference process can happen quickly, and the legislature is trying to recess for the summer in anticipation of upcoming elections.

It is imperative that you and all homeschoolers call today or this will become law!

Please contact the members of the conference committee, the speaker’s office, the office of the Senate president and your own legislator and give them the following message in your own words:

Homeschool parents should not have to submit a sworn affidavit with additional information in order for their children to be considered for state college admission. Homeschool families and graduates should be treated equally under the law.

I am asking you to include Senate Amendment AM2737x1 in the conference language to solve the problem of discrimination against homeschooled graduates. HB 487, as amended on page 245 creating RC 3345.06(D)(1), doesn’t solve the problem and would make things worse. AM 2737x1, however, is a simple fix that would solve the problems homeschool graduates have with employment and college admissions.

I am asking you to either pass AM2737X1 or take out the entire new section proposed on page 245, RC 3345.06(D)(1). Statute and supporting case law from the Ohio Supreme Court as well as the Ohio Court of Appeals recognize that homeschooling that complies with Ohio Law is a lawful equivalent of a “recognized and accredited” education. However, companies and colleges ignore this and still discriminate against otherwise qualified homeschooled graduates, even pointing to state law definitions of a “recognized diploma” as reasons for discrimination. That is why AM2737x1 is needed.

Isn’t it only fair that each person should be considered on his own merits and not on the basis of whose name is on his diploma? Please vote to include AM2737X1 to HB 487 or to get rid of RC 3345.06(D)(1) on page 245 of HB 487.

Contact the following members of the Ohio Legislature today with the message!

Ohio House Speaker William Batchelder: 614-466-8140
rep69@ohiohouse.gov

Ohio Senate President Keith Faber: 614-466-7584
faber@ohiosenate.gov

Conference Committee members:

Representative Gerald Stebleton 614-466-8100
rep77@ohiohouse.gov

Representative Andrew Brenner 614-644-6711
rep67@ohiohouse.gov

Representative Theresa Fedor 614-644-6017
rep45@ohiohouse.gov

Senator Peggy Lehner (R) 614-466-4538
lehner@ohiosenate.gov

Senator Randy Gardner (R) 614-466-8060
gardner@ohiosenate.gov

Senator Tom Sawyer (D) 614-466-7041
sawyer@ohiosenate.gov

Locate your legislator >>

Background

The Senate version of HB 487 includes the following text affecting the admission of homeschool graduates and 08 school graduates into state universities and community colleges (p. 245, RC 3345.06(D)(1):

(D)(1) For the purpose of consideration for admission to the institution, each state institution of higher education, as defined in section 3345.011 of the Revised Code, shall accept a sworn affidavit verifying the successful completion of a student’s high school curriculum from either of the following:

(a) If the student was enrolled in a nonchartered nonpublic school, the chief administrator of that school;

(b) If the student was excused from attendance at school for the purpose of home instruction under section 3321.04 of the Revised Code, the student’s parent or guardian.

Any affidavit submitted pursuant to this section shall also include a record of the student’s completed coursework and the grade received in each course. Notwithstanding anything in the Revised Code to the contrary, the affidavit shall fulfill any admission criteria requiring proof of the successful completion of that student’s applicable high school curriculum.

(2) For the purposes of consideration for admission to a state institution of higher education, no institution shall discriminate against any student to which division (D) of this section applies solely on the manner in which the student received instruction in order to successfully fulfill the high school curriculum applicable to that student.

AM 2737X1 is a simple fix to the problem. Click here to see the amendment.

You have probably heard the story about how NiSource, a large company, hired a qualified graduate but then revoked the offer after they found out he was homeschooled. This case is just the tip of the iceberg, and we need your immediate help to pass legislation that will stop this kind of discrimination.

Ohio law recognizes homeschooling as a legal and valid means of education. The Ohio Court of Appeals has called homeschooling the equivalent of an accredited education. But private and state-owned colleges and universities continue to create obstacles for homeschool graduates. Private companies can hire who they want, but they should not be permitted to say that they can’t hire homeschoolers because they don’t have a legal diploma. The Ohio Legislature can stop this unfair discrimination if you will act now.

The amendment clarifies that colleges and employers in Ohio must treat a homeschool diploma as legitimate. They can still have their own admission and hiring policies, but this amendment would clarify that state law does not permit discrimination just because a person was homeschooled.

HSLDA and CHEO have been working for several years with legislators to solve this problem. Although some language was included in HB 487, it needs to be amended to address the full range of discrimination that Ohio homeschooled graduates are facing in employment and college admissions. Visit HSLDA’s Ohio page or the CHEO website for more information.

Sincerely,

/signature/

Michael P. Donnelly, Esq.
HSLDA Staff Attorney

• • •

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 enables us to defend individual families threatened by government officials and protect homeschooling freedom for all. Join now >>


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