Home School Court Report
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Vol. XXV
No. 5
Cover
September/October
2009

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HAWAII

HSLDA Monitors Bills

This legislative session, Home School Legal Defense Association tracked more than 10 bills that could have impacted homeschooling families in the Aloha State. Only one would have directly impacted parents’ right to teach their children at home. Most of the bills would have had an indirect effect on homeschooling families, such as impacting traditional family values or amending the requirements for mandatory reporters of abuse or neglect.

House Bill 603 would have had the greatest impact on homeschooling parents by lowering the state compulsory attendance age to 5, making kindergarten attendance mandatory, and requiring homeschooled kindergartners to pass a test before being admitted to 1st grade in a public school.

While HSLDA closely monitored HB 603, no action was necessary since the measure was never brought up in either of the committees to which it was assigned.

Two similar bills were introduced to permit homeschooled students to participate in extracurricular activities offered at the public school. House Bill 493 failed to make it out of the House. Senate Bill 360 did pass the Senate, but wasn’t able to pass the House. HSLDA reviewed these bills and made recommendations to ensure that they would not negatively impact the right of all parents to teach their children at home. However, as an organization, HSLDA is generally neutral on the issue of participation in extracurricular activities through the public school.

— by Thomas J. Schmidt