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The Logic Behind Our Legislative Alerts
Tips for Connecting with Electied Officials
Grassroots Action

State - Current

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AHEM’s position on federal homeschooling legislation AHEM’s philosophy is to strengthen the grassroots presence of homeschoolers, as our voices are strongest at the local and state level. It follows that it is wise to keep home-schooling out of federal law as much as possible to avoid further regulation and to keep the local, grassroots strength of homeschooling alive.

Legislative Issues

State legislation that could affect homeschoolers in Massachusetts.

Legislative Update – June 2017

Below is a summary of bills filed so far this session that are of interest to Massachusetts homeschoolers. While no action needs to be taken on any of these bills, we always encourage citizens to engage in the legislative process! Your opinion pro or con will have the most weight if the bill was filed by your own representative, or if your rep is on the committee considering the bill. (If you're not sure who your reps are, you can check here.)

AHEM will continue to monitor these and any additional bills that may be filed during the 190th Session that could affect homeschooling in Massachusetts.

Bills concerning MCAS


H276
AN ACT RELATIVE TO NON-PUBLIC SCHOOL STUDENT ACCESS TO THE MCAS EXAM
Bradley H. Jones
1/23/2017 House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017 Senate Senate concurred
4/13/2017 Joint Hearing
5/18/2017 House Accompanied by H319
5/18/2017 House Bill reported favorably by committee and referred to the committee on House Ways and Means
Summary: Would direct the DESE to issue a report on the feasibility and costs associated with non-public school students in grade 10 voluntarily taking the MCAS.
AHEM position: Neutral.

H319
AN ACT RELATIVE TO NON-PUBLIC SCHOOL STUDENT ACCESS TO THE MCAS EXAM
Alan Silvia
1/23/2017        House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017        Senate Senate concurred
4/13/2017        Joint Hearing
5/18/2017        House  Accompanied H276
Summary: Would direct the DESE to issue a report on the feasibility and costs associated with non-public school students in grade 10 voluntarily taking the MCAS.
AHEM position: Neutral.

Bills regarding minimum age of attendance and kindergarten

H2013
AN ACT TO IMPLEMENT FULL-DAY KINDERGARTEN
Antonio F. D. Cabral
1/23/2017 House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017 Senate Senate concurred
6/20/2017 Joint Hearing
Summary: Would make kindergarten full-day and mandatory.
AHEM position: Opposed.

H2056
AN ACT RELATIVE TO DROPOUT PREVENTION AND RECOVERY
Alice Hanlon Peisch
1/23/2017 House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017 Senate Senate concurred
6/20/2017 Joint Hearing
Summary: Would make kindergarten mandatory.
AHEM position: Opposed.

H2061
AN ACT ESTABLISHING UNIVERSAL EARLY EDUCATION AND FULL-DAY KINDERGARTEN
Frank I. Smizik
1/23/2017 House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017 Senate Senate concurred
6/20/2017 Joint Hearing
Summary: Would lower the mandatory age to attend a full day of school to five.

AHEM position: Opposed.

H2843
AN ACT RELATIVE TO UNIVERSAL FULL-DAY KINDERGARTEN
Marjorie C. Decker
1/23/2017 House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017 Senate Senate concurred
6/20/2017 Hearing
Summary: Would require schools to offer full-day kindergarten.

AHEM position: Opposed.

Bills raising the mandatory attendance age


H2015
AN ACT TO REQUIRE SCHOOL ATTENDANCE UP TO AGE EIGHTEEN OR UNTIL GRADUATION
Antonio F. D. Cabral
1/23/2017 House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017 Senate Senate concurred
6/20/2017 Joint Hearing
Summary: Would raise the age of compulsory attendance to "18, having completed at least the twelfth grade or whichever comes first."

AHEM position: Opposed.

H3479 AN ACT RELATIVE TO ENCOURAGING AND SUPPORTING HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION
Paul McMurtry
1/23/2017        House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017        Senate Senate concurred
6/20/2017        Joint    Hearing
Section 1B of chapter 69 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the word “attendance”, in line 120, the following words:- ; provided, however, that all children under the age of 18 shall be required to attend school if they have not graduated from high school.
Summary: Would raise the age of compulsory attendance to 18, "if they have not graduated from high school."
AHEM position: Opposed.

H3555
AN ACT RELATIVE TO DROPOUT PREVENTION AND STUDENT RECOVERY
Juana Matias
1/23/2017        House  Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017        Senate Senate concurred
6/15/2017        Joint    Hearing 06/20/2017
SECTION 1. Section 1B of chapter 69 of the General Laws, as appearing in the 2014 Official Edition, is hereby amended by inserting after the word “attendance”, in line 120, the following words:- ; provided, however, that all children under the age of 18 shall be required to attend school if they have not graduated from high school.
Summary: Would raise the age of compulsory attendance to 18, "if they have not graduated from high school."
AHEM position: Opposed.

S222
AN ACT RELATIVE TO DROPOUT PREVENTION AND RECOVERY
Sonia Chang-Diaz
1/23/2017        Referred to the committee on Education
1/23/2017        House concurred
4/10/2017        Joint    Hearing 04/13/2017
5/18/2017        Senate Bill reported favorably by committee and referred to the committee on Senate Ways and Means
Summary: Raises the compulsory attendance age from 16 to 18.
AHEM position: Opposed.