Rep. Cook filed a bill today that would greatly restrict parents’ ability to transfer their children from public school to home school.
This bill moves us to a “two dates” system in which parents must declare their intent to home school by no later than August 15 for the fall semester or December 1 for the spring semester. It also requires you show proof of testing when you register to home school. Leaving the school to home school mid-semester requires the parent submit an application to the school district.
The school district will form a committee consisting of the school counselor, the principal or assistant principal, and one of the child’s current teachers. The committee will have 15 days to review the application before determining whether or not they will allow the child to home school.
The bill makes absolutely no provision for students who wish to home school because they are ill, being bullied, encountering sexual harassment, or suffering academically.
When we first heard about this bill, we hoped that we might be able to amend disagreeable language so that the bill would not be detrimental to home schooling. The fact of the matter, however, is that, after looking at the bill in its entirety, there simply is no way to make this bill palatable: It’s a bad piece of legislation that attacks home schoolers, and it needs to be defeated.
Please call your State Representative and your State Senator, and ask them both to oppose this bill.
The bill number is House Bill 2144. You can contact your legislators using the phone numbers below:
House of Representatives – 501-682-6211
Arkansas Senate – 501-682-2902
Please call your legislators, and ask them to vote against House Bill 2144, the David Cook home school bill. And please ask your friends to do the same.
You can see a copy of the bill by clicking here (opens in a new window).
We will keep you updated on this bill in the days to come.
David is a former home school student. In 2007 he graduated from John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, with a bachelors degree in Business Administration. He currently works as Education Alliance's primary IT employee, webmaster, and blogger. David and his wife live in Little Rock.