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Wisconsin

November 6, 2009

Waukesha Census Form Issue Resolved

The Hasslett family (name changed to protect their privacy) received a letter from the Waukesha assistant superintendent for student services and special education asking them to fill out a “school district census” form. The letter said the district was “required to maintain census information on all students living in the district ages zero to twenty.” The form called for the children’s names, birth dates, ethnicity, disability status, language spoken at home, etc. This puzzled the Hassletts, since they had submitted their annual DPI form and were already in full compliance with the law. Members of HLSDA, they asked for guidance.

We told them they could disregard the form since no law required them to complete it.

Senior Counsel Scott Woodruff followed up and wrote a letter asking the official to state the authority under which he was placing this burden on Waukesha homeschoolers. He replied promptly by phone, emphasized the school district’s desire to maintain a good relationship with homeschoolers, and agreed to change the language in the future to make it clear that the form is optional.