September 11, 2023 – Update about ongoing sports issues

WHPA has received an increased number of reports in recent months from homeschoolers who wish to exercise their rights under the law to participate in public school sports (Wis Stat 118.133(1)) being asked for far more than the law requires, and which violate their homeschooling rights. WHPA has reached out to WIAA in an attempt to develop a solution which comports with the law, and we look forward to continuing to advance positive solutions for all parties that comport with the law. In the meantime, we have developed two sample letters which parents may use and tailor to their individual

March 24, 2022 – Reminders About Proposed “Micro Education Pods”

WHPA has been working hard to preserve parental rights in Wisconsin, and opposing proposed “micro education pods” over the last year and a half. As of this writing, the proposed bill creating “micro education pods” is awaiting either approval or veto by Governor Evers. According to the Legislature’s 2021-22 Session Calendar, the next date that bills are scheduled to be presented to the Governor is April 14 (if it is presented to the Governor sooner, we will let you know). WHPA has again appealed to our members to speak up for parental rights by contacting Governor Evers

March 9, 2022 – AB 122 UPDATE and ACTION ALERT

On Tuesday, March 8, the Wisconsin Senate voted to pass AB 122, and it will soon be presented to Gov. Tony Evers for his signature or veto.

This is the final opportunity to stop AB 122 from becoming law.

Please contact Gov. Evers’ office and ask him to VETO AB 122. By doing so, he protects both our clear legal homeschool and private school structure in Wisconsin, and a parent’s inherent right to educate their own children.

Contact information for Gov. Evers: Phone: (608) 266-1212 Email: You can find WHPA’s background and analysis of

March 6, 2022 – AB 122 Final Vote on Tuesday

On Friday, March 4, the Senate Committee on Education passed both “micro education pod” bills, AB 122 and SB 201, out of committee, and AB 122, which has already been passed by the Assembly, has been scheduled for a vote by the full Senate on Tuesday, March 8. It is critical that WHPA members and supporters speak up in defense of our homeschooling law. You can find background and analysis of these bills on our website. Call your Senator before Tuesday and ask them to vote NO on AB 122. (Find tips on our website.)

March 4, 2022 – Voting Day on SB 201 and AB 122

The time is NOW to call the Senate Committee on Education The Wisconsin Senate Committee on Education is voting TODAY AT MIDDAY on SB 201 and AB 122. The Committee is taking the unusual action of voting on a large package of education bills in private by paper ballot, instead of in public by voice vote or roll call vote. We have been informed the ballots will go out at 12:30 and must be returned by 1:30. If you have not yet done so, please call all the Committee members listed below immediately and tell them to VOTE NO on


WHPA was fundamental in the writing and passage of our longstanding reasonable homeschool law in 1984. Our members and member-volunteers have worked hard ever since to protect our rights. WHPA needs our members and allies to speak up now. WHPA Is Not A Lobbyist Firm WHPA is Wisconsin’s only statewide, grassroots, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to protect every Wisconsin parent’s right to educate their own children according to their own principles and beliefs. “Grassroots” means WHPA exists to empower parents to exercise their rights and freedoms. “Grassroots” means when we need to share a message with legislators, we rely on our

February 24, 2022 – Update and Action Alert 2021 AB 122 / SB 201: “Micro Education Pods”

Yesterday, Wednesday February 23, 2022, the Wisconsin Senate Committee on Education held a public hearing to hear testimony about several proposed education bills, including SB 201 / AB 122, which would create “micro education pods” in Wisconsin. Members of the WHPA Board of Directors testified in person in opposition to this bill. You can view the hearing in full on the Wisconsin Eye website by following this link and registering for a free account: (note: the SB 201 portion is the very first part and this video will go behind a paywall 24 hours after its posting)

February 22, 2022 – WHPA Needs Your Support Tomorrow

The Assembly version of the proposal to create unregulated private schools, called “micro-education pods,” AB 122, passed out of the Assembly today, and we learned late this afternoon that the Senate version of the same bill, SB 201, is scheduled for a public hearing with the Senate Committee on Education tomorrow morning. This bill threatens our homeschooling rights by confusing the difference between homeschools (based on parental rights) and private schools (based on state law). It is critical that WHPA members and supporters speak up in defense of our homeschooling law at this hearing. The public hearing is scheduled for: Wednesday, February

August 2021 – Is Wisconsin’s “Kindergarten Requirement” Enforceable?

A Wisconsin law passed in 2009 states public schools may not enroll a child in first grade unless that child has completed 5-year-old kindergarten, or applies for and receives an exemption to this requirement. Does this law mean a school can refuse to enroll a child in first grade? The answer is we don’t know for certain. The law has never been challenged or tested in the courts. However, it appears unenforceable. For a child who did not complete kindergarten, but wants to enroll in first grade, the confusing state of the law is this: First, public

July 23, 2021 – Public Hearing Cancelled – Watch for New Date

As of Friday, July 23, 2021, Senate Education Committee Chair Darling has removed the public hearing for SB 201 (Creation of Micro Education Pods) from the committee’s calendar. Your testimony and attendance are no longer required on August 3. However, a hearing on the bill may be rescheduled at any time. WHPA’s Legislative Watch Committee will continue to monitor this and all proposed legislation, and update members when necessary.

July 23, 2021 – Call to Action For SB 201


WHPA members should already be aware of the ongoing attempt by legislators to create unregulated private schools in Wisconsin, called “micro education pods” (formerly “microschools”), and WHPA’s diligent work opposing this proposal. You can read WHPA’s previous statements and action on this proposal here and here. The Senate version of the bill, SB 201, is scheduled for a public hearing with the Senate Committee on Education. It is critical that WHPA members and supporters speak up in defense of our homeschooling law at this hearing. The public hearing

March 15, 2021 – Action Alert: 2021 AB 122 / SB 201 “Creation of Microschools”

Download a PDF of this Action Alert

WHPA’s Board of Directors issued a statement to you, our members, last week regarding the proposed bill to create so-called “microschools” in Wisconsin, AB 122 / SB 201. If you have not yet read this statement, please read it here: WHPA has been monitoring the creation and progress of these bills through the legislative process. The bills now have sponsors in both the Assembly and the Senate and there will be a public hearing on the Assembly bill this week on Thursday, March 18. WHPA is asking our

March 8, 2021 – Response to AB122 (2021)

Download a PDF of this statement

March 8, 2021


Introduction and History

Wisconsin Assembly Bill 122 (AB122) proposes to create an entirely new class of private schools in Wisconsin, called microschools. As proposed, microschools are programs of educational instruction that can be provided by anyone, anywhere, to any group of children, as long as the group consists of two to five family units and no more than twenty children. Wisconsin Homeschooling Parents Association (WHPA) has serious concerns about the proposed definition and regulation

February 8, 2021 – Election of State Superintendent of Public Instruction

Note: this paper originally appeared as an article in the February 2009 WHPA newsletter (Issue #99). It has been updated for clarity.

  On February 16, in the spring primary, and on April 6, in the general election, Wisconsin voters will choose the next State Superintendent of Public Instruction. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, WHPA does not endorse any political candidate, or ally itself with any political organization. As a reminder, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction heads the state Department of Public Instruction, which advances public schools and public libraries. Under Wisconsin law, DPI must create and process the


55. Maintain Parental Rights in Education by Refusing to Sign Public School Withdrawal Forms (5/15)

Whereas increasingly many public school officials have adopted the practice of requiring that parents sign a withdrawal form in order for their child to be removed from the public school’s enrollment records; and Whereas Wisconsin statutes specifically state that the parent or guardian of a child ages 6 through 18 shall cause the child to attend school and authorize penalizing the parent, guardian, and/or child for not attending; and Whereas Wisconsin statutes specifically provide that parents and guardians can choose where their child will attend a school and also state that it is the parent’s responsibility to ensure that the

54. Maintain the Distinction Between Homeschooling and Public Virtual Charter Schools (5/14)

Whereas the pioneers of the modern homeschooling movement in Wisconsin worked together despite their differences to ensure that the Wisconsin Legislature passed a reasonable homeschooling law that recognized the right of families to choose for their members an education consistent with their principles and beliefs; and Whereas homeschoolers have organized themselves as Wisconsin Parents Association (WPA) to watch and protect their parental rights in education, especially homeschooling rights and responsibilities; and Whereas we cannot assume that freedoms and laws will continue in perpetuity once they are established and recognized, instead they must be continually safeguarded; and Whereas it is easy

53. Common Core State Standards in Education (5/13)

Whereas since the publication in 1983 of A Nation at Risk, a federal report on the status of education in the US, there has been an increasing push by both Democrats and Republicans to reform public education from the top down through federal goals, standards, testing requirements, reporting, and monitoring of children and families; these federal initiatives include Goals 2000, America 2000, No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and now Common Core State Standards; and Whereas the US Constitution gives no authority to the federal or state governments in the area of education; and Whereas the US Code

52. Encouraging Homeschoolers to File Form PI-1206 Online in Accordance With the Law (5/12)

Whereas Wisconsin has a very reasonable homeschooling law that has worked well for homeschoolers for 28 years; and Whereas this law is something Wisconsin homeschoolers working through Wisconsin Parents Association (WPA) have worked hard to achieve and maintain; and Whereas the educational establishment continues to look for reasons to further regulate homeschooling in Wisconsin; and Whereas when the freedom to homeschool has been tested in courts and legislatures, homeschoolers in nearly all other states have not achieved the homeschooling freedoms we currently have in Wisconsin; and Whereas when homeschool attorneys have gone to court and argued that homeschoolers should not

51. New Kindergarten Statute and Homeschooling (5/11)

Whereas the recent five-year-old kindergarten statute will result in children being put under increased pressure socially, academically, and emotionally; and Whereas, in part due to Wisconsin Parents Association’s (WPA) work and testimony over the years opposing such legislation, it does not directly affect homeschoolers today but is confusing to homeschoolers and a cause of concern for what might happen as conventional schooling is being required at younger and younger ages; and Whereas the recent statute means:

  • enforcing truancy laws on five-year-olds enrolled in conventional schools
  • providing more money for public schools

50. Prevent Further Erosion of the Role of Parents in Children’s Early Years (5/10)

Whereas educational institutions, state and federal governments, many professionals and their associations, major corporate interests as well as the media are promoting a wide range of programs and policies such as universal childcare, home visitations by professionals, birth to three programs, preschool screening, mental health screening, and four and five year old kindergarten; and Whereas these same institutions, professions, and organizations in their communications concerning these programs and policies convey the idea that they are in the best interests of the child, do not have harmful side effects, and even that they are required; and Whereas there is mounting evidence

49. Importance of Parents to Children’s Development and Learning and a Family’s Well Being (5/09)

Whereas major studies over the past 40 years have consistently shown parents and families, rather than schools or teachers, to be the determining factor in whether a child succeeds academically and socially; and Whereas day care and preschool have been shown to lead to anti-social and aggressive behavior; and Whereas child care can have serious harmful results for the child, parents, and the family (For example, an abstract from a recent major study of universal child care includes these findings: “Finally, we uncover striking evidence that children are worse off in a variety of behavioral and health dimensions, ranging from

48. Maintaining the Basic Principles of Homeschooling (5/08)

Whereas during the past 30 years, parents and families have reestablished and confirmed the basic and traditional concept of homeschooling in the United States as a practice whereby parents take primary and direct responsibility for the education of their children with as little state regulation as possible; and Whereas this practice in Wisconsin has been achieved primarily through the hard and continuous work of homeschooling parents working through Wisconsin Parents Association against great resistance from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, public school boards, teachers unions, school district administrators, and others in the educational establishment; and Whereas although today there

47. Institutionalizing Young Children (5/07)

Whereas there is a growing movement to institutionalize children at younger and younger ages; and Whereas this movement takes a variety of the forms including the Birth to Three year old program, Child Find programs aimed at identifying children in need of special services, preschool screening, preschool programs, and kindergarten programs for three- and four-year olds; and Whereas professionals, corporations, and government have joined together through federal and state commissions and through studies and have identified early childhood education as a good practice and part of the answer to ensuring a strong economy; and Whereas the National Center on Education

46. History of Homeschooling in Wisconsin (5/06)

Whereas the pioneers of the modern homeschooling movement in Wisconsin worked together despite their differences to ensure that the Wisconsin Legislature passed a homeschooling law that recognized the right of families to choose for their members an education consistent with their principles and beliefs; and Whereas WPA has formulated essential principles and practices to ensure that our homeschooling freedoms survive-these include knowing what is required of homeschoolers in Wisconsin; doing only the minimum required by statute or regulation; not ignoring violations of our rights, even if they seem too small to matter; not seeking or accepting benefits from the government;

45. No Child Left Behind (5/05)

Whereas the federal government has no constitutional authority over education but gains power over education by creating programs in education that give federal tax dollars to states and school districts who comply with the requirements of these programs; and Whereas the federal government has used its grants of tax dollars to influence and control education, including in recent years the establishment of national standards for elementary and secondary education; and Whereas a major piece of legislation known as No Child Left Behind was recently passed that requires of any school that receives federal education money to test children in grades

44. Mental Health Screening (5/05)

Whereas an increasing number of federal and state mental health screening programs are being established to screen preschool and school children as well as young children, teens, and adults; and Whereas the questions asked during the screenings are so general and ambiguous that nearly anyone could be identified as mentally ill or in need of further testing; and Whereas doctors, workers in health clinics, school personnel, social service workers, juvenile justice authorities, etc. are all being encouraged to conduct such screenings, and people may not realize that they are being screened; and Whereas screenings are especially targeted at groups considered

43. Student Identification Database Systems (5/04)

Whereas federal and state governments are requiring that more and more personal information about any family that receives government education services be collected, stored, and used in government controlled databases; and Whereas these databases include or will soon include a great deal of personal information that goes well beyond the names and addresses of families to include nicknames, disabilities, income level, occupation, test scores, etc.; and Whereas the information collected serves the interests and values of those designing the database systems and not the interests of parents or students and more specifically not the interests of homeschoolers; and Whereas information

42. The Media and Homeschooling (5/04)

Whereas the media in the United States holds enormous power to persuade and to inform or misinform the public; and Whereas the media is a primary source of news for most people, including those who hold it in low regard; and Whereas the media seldom does in-depth, independent fact-finding but rather relies on experts in universities, think tanks, foundations, and large organizations for the news they report; and Whereas the media increasingly reports at face value the views and prejudices of government officials instead of playing the media’s historic role as the “fourth estate” of questioning, if not challenging, government

41. Maintaining the Distinction Between Public Schools and Homeschools (and Other Private Schools) (5/03)

Whereas public school administrators and officials are contacting homeschoolers through surveys, invitations to public meetings, and other announcements in an effort to bring homeschoolers into the public schools; and Whereas private companies in conjunction with public schools are marketing public e-schools to homeschoolers; and Whereas although homeschoolers come from all walks of life, homeschool for a number of different reasons, and use a variety of curriculums and approaches to education, they all have one thing in common, namely, their determination to preserve the right to choose for their children an education consistent with their beliefs and principles; and Whereas homeschoolers

40. Education Vouchers, Educational Investment Accounts, and Tax Credits and Deductions for Education (5/03)

Whereas education vouchers, educational investment accounts, and tax credits and deductions for education that are being proposed at the federal and state levels of government would allow the government to define education and impose its values, judgments, and often its testing on people; and Whereas such education vouchers would not be given to families but only to the institutions that families select from among those the state has certified as eligible to receive money from the state through vouchers; and Whereas such education vouchers can easily lead to state control of education and further control of families; and Whereas legislation

39. Government Imposed Immunizations (5/02)

Whereas bills have been introduced in several states, including Wisconsin, authorizing the governor to require that all citizens be immunized against one or more diseases by declaring a public health emergency; and Whereas there would in effect be no exceptions to this requirement since those objecting or refusing to be immunized for reasons of health, religion, or personal conviction would be placed in quarantine; and Whereas giving the government this authority would override existing statutory law that recognizes and provides for exemptions from required immunizations based on health, religion, or personal conviction; and Whereas clear evidence indicates that immunizations are

38. Public E-Schools (5/02)

Whereas public e-schools are public schools that are located in homes by means of a computer and the requirements and oversight of federal and state governments; and Whereas these schools are often called homeschools and the public will undoubtedly view them as homeschools; and Whereas these public schools require state and federal testing of students; and Whereas such schools are required to meet federal and state standards; and Whereas such tests and standards will dictate the curriculum of the schools; and Whereas state and federally mandated curriculums eliminate any real choice in how an actual homeschool could have an education

37. Homeschools Defined by Law as One Family Unit (5/01)

Whereas Wisconsin statutes state that, “‘Home-based private educational program’ means a program of educational instruction provided to a child by the child’s parent or guardian or by a person designated by the parent or guardian. An instructional program provided to more than one family unit does not constitute a home-based private educational program.” (s. 115.001[3g]); and Whereas a homeschool in Wisconsin is a private school that is limited to one family unit; and Whereas a national homeschooling organization based outside of Wisconsin has informed some homeschoolers in Wisconsin that they can disobey this part of the statutes by using a

36. Standardized Testing Required by the Federal or State Government (5/01)

Whereas schools need to prepare students for tests they are required to take, which means that required tests dictate what curriculum will be used and how it will be taught; and Whereas federal testing represents a major increase in government control of education because although states, not the federal government, have the policing authority to make laws that govern schools, the federal government is claiming it has the authority to require federal testing of students in schools that accept money from the federal government; and Whereas federal testing is especially powerful because it applies the same requirements to the whole

35. Survey Research on Homeschooling (5/00)

Whereas survey research on homeschooling undermines our homeschooling freedoms in several ways, including the following:

  • Survey research is generally designed to compare homeschoolers to students in conventional schools, using the standards of conventional schools, which implies that homeschools should adopt the standards, practices, and values of conventional schools and assumes that these are the only correct ones.
  • People who feel homeschoolers should be required to take state-mandated tests can point to survey research that includes homeschoolers’ scores on standardized tests as evidence that homeschoolers are willing to take such tests.
  • Research that indicates that even a

34. Laws designed to prevent certain families from homeschooling (5/00)

Whereas constant pressure for increased regulation of homeschooling comes from a number of sources; and Whereas legislation that increases regulations for any homeschooler inevitably increases regulations for all homeschoolers and when laws are designed to prevent certain families from homeschooling, everybody loses homeschooling freedoms; and Whereas such laws would make the state the judge of all homeschoolers in order to prevent a very few from homeschooling; and Whereas the argument that “homeschooling families that are doing a good job should not object to requirements designed to ensure that children are getting a ‘good education'” only works if families don’t mind

33. Legislation That Undermines Homeschooling Freedoms (5/99)

Whereas homeschoolers are a small minority that has regained its rightful educational freedoms in Wisconsin through hard work and maintained them through constant vigilance; and Whereas our approach to education is generally not understood or shared by the majority of people in our society; and Whereas our elected representatives are accustomed to providing state programs in education in exchange for state regulation of schools by means of state goals, state educational standards, state-mandated tests, state audits of educational institutions, and state prescriptions of who is qualified to teach and/or receive benefits; and Whereas most homeschoolers value their homeschooling freedoms more

32. Graduation Test (5/99)

Whereas recent legislation requires that beginning in 2003, public school students must pass a state-mandated graduation test in order to receive a diploma; and Whereas in the future this test could be required of private school students (including homeschoolers) either in exchange for vouchers or merely because the state decides such tests are a good idea for private school students; and Whereas such standardized tests are unfair and biased against women, minorities, and people who do not have the same values and experiences as those who design the test; and Whereas such tests do not measure important qualities such as

31. High Schools’ Mock Trial Involving a Homeschooler (5/98)

Whereas the 1998 Wisconsin High School Mock Trial Tournament, sponsored by the State Bar of Wisconsin, presented an extremely negative and misleading impression of homeschoolers (see their 1998 Handbook of Case Materials); and Whereas the case materials developed by the State Bar of Wisconsin and distributed to high schools throughout the state foster misunderstanding and unwarranted prejudice against homeschoolers; and Whereas the materials reduce truancy to a simplistic behavior and fail to distinguish between compulsory attendance and compulsory education; and Whereas the materials are similar to the highly prejudicial and misinformed testimony presented at a hearing in April, 1997, before

30. Impact on Homeschooling Freedoms of Homeschoolers’ Qualifying for Public School Sports Teams (5/98)

Whereas homeschoolers have regained significant freedom of thought and belief by working to establish and maintain ourselves as private schools independent of public schools; and Whereas Wisconsin has a reasonable homeschooling law that homeschoolers have worked hard to get passed and to maintain; and Whereas homeschoolers are a very small minority but large and powerful interest groups are pressing for increased state regulation of homeschooling; and Whereas, in order for Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) rules to be changed so that homeschoolers could participate on public school sports teams, homeschools would have to comply with the Department of Public Instruction

29. The Real Cost of Tax Credits for Homeschoolers’ Educational Expenses (5/98)

Whereas state and federal governments are proposing tax credits for educational expenses and are trying to convince homeschoolers to support such proposals by including homeschooling expenses; and Whereas specific expenses such as “educational” expenses qualify for tax credits only if those expenses meet the state’s standards in education, schools qualify only if they are accredited or in some other way approved by the state, tutors qualify only if they are officially licensed, etc.; and Whereas tax credits are one way for the government to get people to do things the government wants them to do whether or not these things

28. Day-Time Curfews, Truancy Sweeps, and ID Cards for Homeschoolers (5/98)

Whereas state and local governments and public and private agencies are using increasingly repressive measures to try to keep young people in school, including day-time curfews and police pick-ups of young people who are not inside a school building during “school hours;” and Whereas such repressive measures have not been shown to be effective in any case but rather have often been found to be counterproductive; and Whereas these measures are a severe infringement of people’s basic freedoms and civil liberties, including the freedom to be in public places and not be interrogated or arrested without reasonable evidence and due

27. School-To-Work Programs (4/97)

Whereas school-to-work programs would greatly increase the influence that schools have over people’s lives by giving the schools the authority to issue “certificates of initial mastery” and “certificates of advanced mastery” that would be required for some jobs; and Whereas school-to-work programs aim to change the fundamental nature of schooling by requiring that students acquire certain knowledge, skills, abilities, and values in order to pass the tests that lead to the certificates; and Whereas proposed state and national standards in education give the government the authority and ability to require that students acquire specific knowledge, skills, and abilities; and Whereas

26. Attempts by the State to Determine Eligibility to Homeschool (4/97)

Whereas Wisconsin has a reasonable homeschooling law that is working well; and Whereas Wisconsin’s homeschooling law protects both the rights of families to homeschool and the interest of the state to see that its citizens do not grow up to be a burden on the state; and Whereas any law that establishes eligibility requirements for homeschooling undermines the rights and responsibilities of parents to choose for their children an education consistent with their principles and beliefs; and Whereas any law that gives the state the right to determine who is eligible to homeschool gives the state inappropriate authority in private

25. Maintaining the Fundamental Foundation of Parental Rights and Responsibilities (5/96)

Whereas the primary rights and responsibilities of people are given by God or nature and not by the state; and Whereas parental rights and responsibilities for rearing children, especially in the areas of education, health, and welfare, are so fundamental that they cannot be realistically reduced to statutory or constitutional language; and Whereas the state does not now have at any level of government (federal, state, or local) the authority to direct how a child should be educated, cared for, or nurtured; (For example, compulsory school attendance laws require attendance but do not require education.) and Whereas once people ask

24. Maintaining Wisconsin’s Homeschooling Law (5/96)

Whereas Wisconsin has a reasonable homeschooling law that homeschoolers have worked hard to pass and maintain; and Whereas homeschoolers are a small minority; and Whereas there are interests that are politically and financially powerful that would like to see increased regulation of homeschools by the state; and Whereas any change to the homeschooling law or any privilege or benefit to homeschoolers that might be proposed, such as providing legislatively that homeschoolers be counted for state aids when taking one or more courses in a public school, could easily open up the homeschooling law for debate, change, and amendment; and Whereas