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Homeschool Registration Bill Tabled by Sponsor

by Scott Woodruff • February 19, 2019

This morning Rep. Monica Bristow, the sponsor of House Bill 3560, filed a motion to table the bill. For all practical purposes, the bill is dead. No action is needed.

I want to take a moment and thank Ralph Rivera, a lobbyist who watches out for homeschool issues in Springfield, for taking the lead in bringing the concerns of the homeschool community to Rep. Bristow.

Background

H.B. 3560 was filed on Friday, and instantly generated intense, well-deserved interest in the homeschool community. Between Friday evening and Tuesday morning, HSLDA received in the neighborhood of 100 communications about the situation.

On Saturday morning we quickly analyzed the bill and coordinated our response with Illinois Christian Home Educators. A couple of hours later we received the good news that Rivera had spoken to Bristow and that she did not intend to move the bill forward. Today she followed up on that intention and filed a motion to table the bill.

Bristow is new to the legislature. She was not in office on February 15, 2011, when 4,500 passionate homeschoolers filled the state capitol to oppose another bill that would have required that homeschool families register, Senate Bill 136.

Analysis

Here are a few of the reasons HSLDA opposed the bill.

  • If enacted, it would have been the worst legislative reversal of homeschool freedom ever experienced in our nation and could have paved the way for even harsher legislative attacks.
  • Every similar home visitation law or rule in the nation has been either repealed, overturned by a court, or is not enforced.
  • There is no empirical evidence to suggest that abuse and neglect occur more often in homeschool families than others.
  • The bill requires the State Board of Education to “inspect the academic records of a registered home-school student” every other year. This provision is both vague and threatening. What records must be inspected? What records must parents keep? What will the inspectors look for? What will happen if the inspectors are not satisfied? We are not told the answers to any of those questions.

Thank you for standing with us for freedom!


Scott Woodruff

Senior Counsel

Scott is a seasoned attorney and homeschool advocate with decades of involvement in homeschool legal issues and cases. Read more.


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