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

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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 being investigated and having their privacy invaded and if families are willing to have their homeschools judged by the standards the state has chosen for education; and

Whereas legislation that unnecessarily regulates homeschooling is unconstitutional because it undermines the fundamental character of homeschools and forces them to conform to public school standards and approaches, thus interfering with families’ rights to choose for their children an education consistent with their principles and beliefs; and

Whereas some so-called “unqualified” homeschoolers are dropouts and expelled students who have been told to homeschool by school officials, although dropouts and expelled students should not be forced into homeschooling; and

Whereas Wisconsin already has strong truancy laws and people who have been charged with truancy and then begin homeschooling can be prosecuted for having been truant; and

Whereas laws that increase state regulation of homeschooling interfere with homeschools that are working well. An old legal maxim states, “Hard cases make bad laws,”); and

Whereas the restrictive truancy laws that have been passed in Wisconsin recently have not solved truancy problems; and

Whereas laws that would allow the state to determine who is qualified to homeschool would give the state too much power over homeschoolers;

Be it resolved by members of the Wisconsin Parents Association (WPA) that WPA will work through its members to oppose laws that would prevent some people from homeschooling and will work through its members to inform parents, the general public, and legislators of the unacceptability and risk of such laws and practices. 5/00

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