Wednesday, May 02, 2007

SB 392 Seeks To Lower Compulsory Education Age In Oregon

I am posting this action alert I received from OCEANetwork of Oregon.


OCEANetwork Alert and Information Email Service
Serving the needs and protecting the rights
of home educators since 1986
"Home education is private education."

================ OCEANetwork Political Action Alert ================

Subject: The situation has changed on SB 392

We have reason to believe that some members of the House Subcommittee on Education Innovation have real concerns about lowering the compulsory attendance age, enough members to maybe kill the bill. So that is what we are going to try for.

Pray. E-mail the Subcommittee again. Come to the hearing.

Full alert:
Please pray.
Email the Subcommittee members asking them to kill SB 392A because it would hurt 6-year-olds who are not mature enough for formal education. If you are a constituent of one of the members, please call them (letting them know you live in their district). If you have written or called before, you need to do it again with your new message – do not pass SB 392. Use your own words, be brief, and be polite.
If you can, please be there at the hearing 1 p.m., Thursday, May 3, Hearing Room D. Numbers will count.
Thank you for spending more time on this issue. We are hopeful that we will be able to kill this bill in committee.
Rodger Williams
OCEANetwork Legislative Coordinator

House Education Innovation Subcommittee Members:
Note: You can find out who your Representative is at
Betty Komp (D), Chair
House District 22 (I-5 from Woodburn to north Salem)
District map:
Karen Minnis (R), Vice-Chair
House District 49 (Fairview)
District map:
(Rep. Minnis is a strong supporter of home education.)
Arnie Roblan (D), Vice-Chair
House District 9 (Coos Bay to Florence)
District map:
Peter Buckley (D) (Chair of the House Education Committee)
House District 5 (Phoenix, Talent, Ashland)
District map:
Ben Cannon (D)
House District 46 (Portland, eastside, from I-84 to south of Highway 26, between 48th & I-205)
District map:
John H Dallum (R)
House District 59 (Wasco, Sherman, Gilliam, Jefferson & Wheeler counties)
District map:
(Rep. Dallum is a strong supporter of home education.)
Gene Whisnant (R)
House District 53 (Deschutes county, excluding Bend)
District map:
(Rep. Whisnant is a strong supporter of home education.)
SB 329 has been introduced at the request of the Oregon Department of Education and is likely part of the bigger movement across the country to lower the compulsory attendance age.

Some of the problems with lowering the compulsory attendance are:

- Lowering the compulsory attendance age from 7 to 6 would subject Oregon home educators to the requirements of the homeschool laws one year earlier. Homeschool parents would be required to submit the notice of intent to their local ESD one year earlier than they do now.

- Additionally, the Oregon Department of Education could possibly change the definition of when the "first year" begins for testing purposes from 7 on September 1 to 6 on September 1, effectively requiring parents to test in grades 3, 5, 8, and 10 a year earlier than they do now. (You do not need to share this reason with your legislators.)

- Many education experts have concluded that beginning a child's formal education too early may actually result in burnout and poor scholastic performance later.

- Lowering the compulsory attendance age erodes the authority of parents who are in the best position to determine when their child's formal education should begin.

- It would restrict parents' freedom to decide if their children are ready for school.

- Another significant impact of expanding the compulsory attendance age would be an inevitable tax increase to pay for more classroom space and teachers to accommodate the additional students compelled to attend public schools.


If you know an Oregon home educating friend who would be interested in this
topic, please pass this message along.

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