Urgent Calls Needed to Stop Obama's Attack on Educational Freedom
Dear HSLDA Members and Friends,
"So tonight, I am proposing that every state--every state--requires that all students stay in high school until they graduate or turn 18."
--President Barack Obama, last night's State of the Union speech.
I was shocked when I heard that. Under our U.S. Constitution, education matters are left to the states. Our Founders wanted decisions about education and a host of other matters left to the states and local government so that these important decisions that affect every family could easily be influenced by the real decision makers: parents and the family.
Parents--not the federal government and certainly not the president--are the ones who should decide how children are educated and when they're ready to graduate from high school.
But last night, President Obama made it clear that he thinks the federal government should be in the business of telling states how long children should stay in school.
Since we were founded in 1983, HSLDA has fought attempts by state legislatures to increase the ages of compulsory attendance in school. We do this because parents--not education bureaucrats--are best equipped to decide how long their children should stay in school.
Now, thanks to President Obama and his willing allies in Congress, we're going to have to fight this in Congress, too. We need to make sure that the White House, and their allies in Congress hear our message loud and strong: leave education decisions to parents.
Right now, please call the White House, and your members of Congress, and give them this message:
"Last night, President Obama called for the government to mandate that all children stay in school until they graduate or turn age 18. This is not the federal government's responsibility. Leave education decisions to parents, not federal bureaucrats. Tell President Obama to withdraw his compulsory attendance mandate immediately." The White House: 202-456-1414, or send an online message: http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=13517 Your U.S. representative and two U.S. senators: 202-224-3121 (Capitol Switchboard) or http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=13518 to find their names and contact info.
There appears to be no limit to this president's desire for power. Car companies, banks, doctors, and now schools and the family. But this time he's gone way too far, and homeschoolers and freedom-loving Americans need to make sure that he hears our message.
Thank you for standing with us for freedom.
Michael P. Farris, JD, LLM Chairman, HSLDA
P.S. Click here http://www.hslda.org/elink.asp?id=13519 to watch the president threaten education freedom in last night's State of the Union speech.
Massachusetts now has a LAW against doing this, don't they?
The notion of compulsory education is for the most part ridiculous, and ignores the obvious fact that the only thing many students kept against their will do, is to interfere in many ways with the education of students that *do* want to be educated.
1) Teachers try to teach “to the middle” of their classes abilities. If the class has more smart, motivated children, the teacher can, at least theoretically, teach at a higher level. However, poor, unmotivated, and disruptive students can drag down a class proportionately much more than smart, motivated students can uplift it.
2) Schools need some means of culling disruptive and even criminal students. As was demonstrated by principal Joe Clark, once even an inner city school was purged of its troublemakers, it was able to thrive.
3) Students are often very aware of their own intellectual interests and shortcomings, seeing no practical advantage to graduating or even attending school beyond a particular point. While later, as adults, they change their minds and get their GED, efforts to persuade or coerce they earlier just creates a wall of resistance, and even anger from them.
You have to remember that public education is primarily a (union) jobs program.
I had some extended family living in a state where the compulsory age was 16. They had a son who hooked up with the wrong crowd and started getting in trouble. His dad tried to put him into a parochial school where he’d get more structure and better guidance. But the kid did not like it, and when he turned 16 he dropped out. His father was told that was the law, and there was nothing he could do about it.
Then he kept getting in trouble with the cops. The police kept bringing him back to his dad. The dad was in a Catch 22 because he was still responsible for the kid for two more years, but could not legally force him to go back to school. And legally he could not kick the kid out either.
This is a stupid and untenable legal situation. Age of majority and compulsory attendance need to be the same.
He needs two more years to DUMB DOWN the public school (or as NY City spelpt it shcool) student, so they be WONDERFUL socialists.
mandatory age 18 is just mandated indoctrination and
MOST IMPORTANT mandated teacher union employment pay off.
School till 18 means more teachers means more union dues funneled to democrats.
According to STAR testing, my home-educated kids were intellectually ready to attend college at the age of 10. There is no way in hell I would ever allow them to remain in a school just to make life easier for incompetent teachers.
By the time I was 18 I had an associates degree and was in a four year school. No diploma from anyone that the government would recognize because that’s what worked for us.
Gee.... wasn’t the Department of Education one of those that loony ol’ Ron Paul wanted to be rid of?