Monday, July 18, 2005

Fight 'em Pennsylvania

The Philly editor says
6, rather than 8, is a smart choice

Nope, 6, rather than 8, is much less of a choice
Pennsylvania has very unfortunate homeschooling regs. But at least their compulsory attendance age is 8 and no lower. Apparently they're once again trying to change that to 6. (What is it with the 2 year drops these legislators go for?)

The world won't come tumbling down if Harrisburg lawmakers make 6 years old the mandatory age to begin school for the commonwealth. They can start with State Senate passage of a House-approved bill sponsored by State Rep. JamesR. Roebuck (D., Phila.) that would lower Philadelphia's mandatory school age from 8 years old to 6. Every state sets both a minimum and maximum age when children are required to attend school. In most, the minimum mandatory age is 6 or 7. OnlyWashington state and Pennsylvania set the floor of mandatory attendance at 8. So with all of the known benefits, what stops Pennsylvania from catching up to the rest of the nation?Home schoolers mainly, who contact legislators at the whisper of changing compulsory attendance laws. No doubt, home-school parents care more than many about their children getting a good education. But as history shows, public education is a cherished principle of the nation. It is not a subversive intrusion into family decision-making.Still, Roebuck's bill exempts home-schoolers because of their concern. That should be enough for state senators to lower the mandatory age - beginning with Philadelphia.

Homeschool Legislation Watch
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