Tennessee homeschoolers are facing the most serious threat to their freedom
since the homeschool law was enacted 23 years ago. House Bill 2795 would
subject non-public school students, including homeschool students, to
additional state testing. It would require them to take subject matter tests
based upon state-approved textbooks. It would also require them to pass the
Tennessee comprehensive assessment program tests before receiving a high
school diploma. These new testing requirements would also apply to students
being taught at home through extension or satellite programs of church-related schools. Your calls to state representatives are needed to stop this dangerous legislation! If House bill 2795 passes, it will essentially mean the end of homeschooling in Tennessee. Parents deciding to teach their children at home would have to conform their curriculum to the material taught in public school in order for their children to be able to pass the state tests. The Tennessee Department of
Education, not parents, would determine whether a student taught at home was
eligible to receive a high school diploma.
A bill very similar to this one is in the works in Nebraska. Even as public school teachers around the country complain about the need to "teach to the test", legislators are trying to impose the same requirements on homeschoolers. I hope the homeschoolers, and everyone else in Tennessee who believes in the constitutional pursuit of liberty, will fight. And I hope this is a lesson to homeschoolers everywhere. We do not exist in a bubble. The direction being taken in the public schools does effect us. Not only will there be constant attempts to trickle down the regulations to our homeschools, but most of the next generation is being educated there. I think it is right for Christians to leave the public school system. I truly believe our children have no place there. At the same time, I don't think we should turn our back on those children that are there. We should fight bad legislation and take a hard look at the people we elect.