Thursday, February 10, 2011

SB 136

SB 136 has been referred to the Education Committee meeting on 2/15.  Please contact the following committee members and register your strong opposition by both phone and email.

Committee Chairman, Sen. James T. Meeks (D-Chicago)
Springfield: 217-782-8066
District: 708-862-1515

Sen. Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Westchester) 
Springfield: 217-782-8505
District: 708-343-7444

Sen. Gary Forby (D-Benton)
Springfield: 217-782-5509
District: 618-439-2504

Sen. Susan Garrett (D-Highwood)
Springfield: 217-782-3650
District: 847-433-2002

Sen. Iris Y. Martinez (D-Chicago)
Springfield: 217-782-8191
District: 773-463-0720

Sen. John G. Mulroe (D-Chicago)
Springfield: 217-782-1035
District: 773-763-3810

Sen. David Luechtefeld (R-Okawville)
Springfield: 217-782-8137
District: 618-243-9014

Sen. Kyle McCarter (R-Decatur)
Springfield: 217-782-5755
District: 217-428-4068

Sen. Suzi Schmidt (R-Lake Villa)
Springfield: 217-782-7353
District: 847-752-7004

Sen. Christine Johnson (R- Sycamore) *Will be sworn in on Feb. 14th
Springfield: 217-782-1977
District: 815-895-6318
could not find contact info for Sen. Johnson

Copy of the letter I sent to each committe member (with shameless academic bragging redacted for public consumption):

Dear Senator McCarter: 
SB 136 requiring home schoolers to register with the State Board of Education according to whatever requirements the SBOE establishes will be heard by the Education Committee on 2/15. This vague bill undermines parental rights and sets home educators on a slippery slope toward unnecessary government intrusion into their lives.  
I am an active voter and an IL home educating mother of 5. All my kids who are of school age perform well above grade level. My oldest, though only a 9th grader, currently has a XX% average at North Central College in Math 152 (Calc 2) and scored a XX on the ACT at age 13; my middle two sons routinely score at the XXth percentile or above on nationally normed standardized tests and my pre-K girl can read at the XX grade level. Somehow, I manage to educate them appropriately without any state intrusion or help and cannot imagine that anything the SBOE could dream up would do anything but hinder me in this endeavor.  
I am asking you to call on Senator Maloney to withdraw this bill and to publicly note your opposition to it. I do not think I can voice my opposition in any clearer terms than your colleague State Senator Suzi Schmidt already has: 
In its current form the bill would mandate all non-public school students (including home-schooled students) to register with the State Board of Education each year, which appears unnecessary, excessive, and provides no solution to a given problem in the public or private education systems. Additionally there is no available information regarding how this mandate might improve education for students, the number of families it will affect, or the anticipated additional cost to taxpayers it will create. Because the proposed legislation seemingly provides no added value to education and is unnecessary to student achievement, I do not support this bill. 
Thank you. 

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