Thursday, April 10, 2008

Anyone have an opinion on House Resolution 1076?

Congressman Howard McKeon has introduced House Resolution 1076 which says parents have the right to educate their children, including homeschooling them. Here is the start of the resolution:

"Calling upon the courts to uphold the fundamental and constitutional right of parents to direct the upbringing and education of their children.
Whereas the modern homeschool movement in the United States demonstrates that homeschooled children are a vital component of the American education system;
Whereas homeschool graduates act responsibly as parents and as students in colleges and universities, are valuable in the workplace, and are productive citizens in society at large;
Whereas many studies confirm that children who are educated at home score considerably above the national average on nationally-normed achievement tests, and above the average on both the SAT and ACT college entrance exams;
"

At one level this seems like a good idea. But I worry that once Congress starts debating this, the language could change and it might end up that parents only have the right to homeschool if they follow some government standard.

What is next? Will Congress decide that parents have the right to feed their children? Or buy toys for their children? Or ...

For more information about the resolution go to Thomas (Library of Congress) and entery 1076. Currently it is the fifth item listed.


(Hat tip: Life, Liberty and Family)


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Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education, Howard McKeon

6 comments:

Sebastian said...

I think that this is a resolution, not a bill and not something that be amended so much that it is holds the opposite effect to its original wording. But the time may be coming when homeschoolers have some big state and federal legislative fights on their hands. It seems that traditionally, we've been wary of legislative remedies because it is hard to control the final language of a bill and hard to control how it is enforced. Maybe the situation in California is demonstrating that reliance on the courts can cause a lot of chaos too.

Loving Our Homeschool said...

While what you posted here looks okay (so far), I am just so leary of the government stepping in AT ALL in regards to homeschooling. I just don't know....

Once the govt. acts on something/does something/starts a program/etc, that program/law/whatever never seems to go away no matter how bad or messed up it becomes. (I hope that makes sense.)

I'm guess I'm not sure what my opinion is on this resolution. It's something to watch though, that's for sure.

Sebastian said...

I should have mentioned earlier that one reason many have held back from trying to get federal legislation on homeschooling is that it then puts the government in the position of defining what homeschooling is. There are enough different conceptions of homeschooling within the community without adding a bureaucratic definition too.
I also expect that the next administration will attempt to revoke or reform NCLB. I'm not sure that the next administration will be so willing to exclude homeschoolers from its requirements.

Diamond to Be said...

I am plainly displaying my ignorance of this sort of thing, but it seems to me that under our constitution we are permitted to do anything the law does not prohibit. If we introduce legislation that ALLOWS homeschooling, how many other things are we going to have to ask permission to do??? This doesn't sit right with me.

Anne said...

Citing of standardized test scores always bothers me. As the homeschooling ranks grow, I expect that calls for regulation/oversight/supervision will increase. Standardized testing seems one of, if not the only, feasible measure.

Though my guys are working above grade level, I'm uncomfortable with my right to homeschool being predicated on test results.

Henry Cate said...

"I am just so leary of the government stepping in AT ALL in regards to homeschooling. I just don't know...."

I agree. It seems like pretty much everything the government tries to fix it makes worse.


"I'm not sure that the next administration will be so willing to exclude homeschoolers from its requirements."

I didn't think NCLB applied to private schools. Efforts to fix problems in the public schools should NOT address homeschooling.


"I am plainly displaying my ignorance of this sort of thing, but it seems to me that under our constitution we are permitted to do anything the law does not prohibit."

This was one of the arguments in the Federalist Papers. I agree that government, especially the federal government, tries to do way too much.


"Though my guys are working above grade level, I'm uncomfortable with my right to homeschool being predicated on test results."

I've always thought it would be fun to make the point that if children in public schools are below grade point they should then be homeschooled. Public schools are doing a poor job.