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February 3, 2015

HSLDA Says No to Proposed Federal Teacher Training Regulations

William A. Estrada, Esq.
Director of Federal Relations

Will Estrada has been leading our efforts to defend homeschooling on Capitol Hill since 2006. As the oldest of eight kids, and a homeschool graduate who married a homeschool graduate, he has a passion for protecting homeschool freedom. Read more >>

On Monday, HSLDA submitted public comments against proposed regulations by the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) concerning teacher training. The regulations would reach further into state and local education by requiring state and private teacher training programs to meet certain standards as a condition for states receiving federal education funds, while demanding more detailed data from states and private colleges on these programs. You can read our public comments here.

After the federal government released its semiannual regulatory agenda on November 21, 2014, HSLDA wrote about our concerns regarding several education-related regulations.

The DOE provided the regulations in response to President Obama’s directive that it “propose a plan to strengthen America’s teacher preparation programs … . The Administration seeks to encourage and support States in developing systems that recognize excellence and provide all programs with information to help them improve, while holding them accountable for how well they prepare teachers to succeed in today’s classrooms and throughout their careers.”

Backdoor Requirements

HSLDA believes that the proposed regulations are simply a backdoor way for the DOE to impose federal teacher training requirements on the states, on colleges and universities, and on other teacher training programs. The federal government has no constitutional authority to set rules for states on how to prepare teachers for the classroom, but incorporating such rules into the conditions by which states may receive federal funds is a classic workaround.

For example, the DOE used the Race to the Top competition established by the 2009 stimulus bill (the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) as a backdoor way to incentivize states to adopt the Common Core State Standards Initiative and other education initiatives championed by the federal government.

Although nothing in the proposed regulations would affect homeschool freedom, HSLDA opposes this expansion of federal power in education. We are concerned that the more control the federal government gains over education, the more opportunity it has to one day attempt to regulate homeschooling.

HSLDA is actively working with Congress to defeat these proposed regulations. The last thing our nation’s teachers need is more regulation, especially by the federal government.

Since the proposed regulations are not yet finalized, we will provide more updates in the near future on this important issue.

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Additional Information

Letter from the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities Opposing the Proposed Regulations

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