Homeschoolers’ group reacts negatively to president’s State of the Union speech

WASHINGTON, Jan. 25, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ — Last night in his State of the Union address, President Obama called on all states to raise their school compulsory attendance age to 18, unnecessarily adding to bureaucratic requirements for homeschoolers.

Homeschool advocates at the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) are dedicated to protecting the educational relationship between parents and their children. Parents — not the federal government and certainly not the president — are the ones who should decide how children are educated and when they’re ready to graduate from high school. 

But President Obama presumptively spoke on behalf of parents and the states: “So tonight, I am proposing that every state — every state — requires that all students stay in high school until they graduate or turn 18.”

Michael Farris, founder and chairman of HSLDA, expressed the shock felt by homeschoolers: “There appears to be no limit to the president’s desire for power. Car companies, banks, doctors, and now schools and the family. He’s gone way too far this time.”

State-mandated attendance has not been the historical norm. In 1642, the Massachusetts Bay Colony stipulated that parents provide religious instruction for their children. For the next 200 years, most education laws were minimal and focused on family-centered education, giving children the tools to read, write, and do arithmetic, helping them understand what it meant to be virtuous citizens, and allowing them to learn a trade.

“Ultimately, a formulaic and compulsory approach to education fails to instill in children a love of learning or a quality education,” explained HSLDA president J. Michael Smith. “HSLDA has consistently protected homeschool families from the harmful effects of compulsory attendance education in their states, reinforcing the parental right to choose the method and duration of education most fitting to the individual needs and gifts of their children.”



Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 6:09 AM By Lisa Bergeson
This President is by far the worst in history, he seeks to destroy personal liberties, faith, and freedom. He is nothing more than a dictator, we will oust him in November, no fear, trust in the Lord.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 6:18 AM By Ted
This is another characteristic of the totalitarian state Obama wants the USA to be. He represents evil to me, I don’t know about you. This man and more importantly his ideas must be stopped.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 6:48 AM By peter
One of the best presidents ever. At least he’s not afraid to speak in the best interests of our country. It’s not what Obama wants America to be; it’s what America should be. Can’t wait to vote for him again.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 7:15 AM By Juergensen
peter ~ Why, you should be proud, voting not once but twice for a man whose life mission is this: www[dot]bit[dot]ly/xQ3VXP

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 7:16 AM By JLS
It’ll put more people to work. More teachers and school staff, and more police to round up truancies, and also more govt to manage it all, plus it’ll raise welfare payments somehow requiring more govt employees. The manufacturing sector will have to hire more people to make more school buses, city planners will have to hire more staff to manage the additional … well, it’s like increasing the population rapidly. Also, more people will enter the USA illegally to take advantage of this windfall because with all the additional jobs created by Obama, there will be more burgers to flip, lawns to mow, buildings to construct, etc. Did I forget doctors and medical staff to handle the additional influx? There should also be govt handouts for bloggers.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 7:20 AM By JLS
Also, with older students in schools, there will be more unwed mothers whose babies will need watching while they attend classes, and more govt programs to deal with this. Govt will need more printing presses to make more money, and more staff and technicians to get ‘er done. With so many additional young adults in high school with this program, there will have to be campus housing, as in colleges. Yessiree, a master stroke of political genius … O’s Hoz will save the world.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 7:25 AM By Juergensen
peter: No doubt that he is the best president ever, and the 3.6 million babies butchered on his watch so far under policies advanced by him no doubt agree too. Too bad we can’t ask them, though, right?

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 8:16 AM By VirgoPotens
Our broken schools are failing our kids. But if our kids are required to stay in those broken schools longer, they’ll be….smarter and better prepared for the workforce. Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it?

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 8:21 AM By MD
Peter-What planet are you on? Socialized medicine that requires Catholic healthcare agencies to perform abortion, give abortification drugs and contraception is the best interest of our Country. The killing of unborn babies being in the best interest of America? Have you heard of the 1st Amendment of the Constitution? Not only does it deny religious principals, but denies life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness to the unborn. You can’t see that the true meaning of him trying to control education is not for the well-being of education, but to limit the fee thinking that occurs in home schools across America; an education that far surpasses that of public and most private schools. God Love You.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 8:42 AM By Catherine
peter, Don’t you love babies and children? Why do you want such negative attention? Don’t you know that God loves you and that God gave you a free will to choose eternal life? Was that mean spirited post cathartic for you? If it was, it is really not a very good sign. You know peter, God sends no one to hell. They vote to go there themselves and God sanctions their vote.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 8:47 AM By Abeca Christian
Don’t be surprised if Therapist also back up what Obama believes, many Therapist view home schooling negatively. They assume that kids who are home schooled do not have enough social skills. But if you look at the numbers, public school children are usually the ones with higher dysfunctional issues and there is so much defiance and rebellion especially since they have to give up their family values to fit in the public school liberal views and with many peers who grow up being raised by public systems because of parental neglect.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 10:00 AM By Maryanne Leonard
I graduated from high school at age 17; should I have spent another year hanging around the place? What about high school dropouts? And obviously, what about the fortunate kids who are home schooled and enjoy individualized education, tours of industries, museums and travel destinations? What about the ill or disabled who need special attention? What about just being free to get a job if desired/required? Or is this no longer a free country? Let’s get 18-year-olds and all other ages to vote this misguided control freak out of office.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 10:03 AM By JMJ
Peter just what do you hate about this country? If you love Obama so much, I’m sure that you will love his true father even more and with a name of Lucifer, he just has to be so much fun & company. Just think, that with planned parenthood controlling the Dept. of Education (Federal & here in Mass.) all of the good information that the victims (school children) will be given. The STD rates which, thanks to “PP” have risen to new heights & with mouth cancer (HPV) being called an epidemic, for both man & woman, because of improper sex as this is what is being “taught” to the kids disguised as “sex education”; the kids can spend more time not learning about anything, except how to have sex without their parents knowing it. Look at what is going to be “taught” in California & very soon this stuff will be through-out the U.S.. We need to stop this mad-man & his form of OBAMANISM now. +JMJ+

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 10:27 AM By Canisius
Peter and Obama want a communist state with all Christians dead or in prison.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 10:59 AM By Abeca Christian
Maryanne Leonard it’s the 18 years old who are also voting him in because they have been indoctrinated into liberal views. Canisius as much as I found humor in your last comment, I can’t help but agree with you because of how they come across against Christian values. Good one!

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 11:00 AM By peter
Juergensen – The only option, then, is to have no president at all, because pro-choice or pro-life, abortion is here to stay. At this point in history, the question of abortion is a moot distraction, and in that regard it is a non-issue for me as far as choosing a president. There is nothing any president could do in 8 years to reverse Roe vs. Wade. Ever. Done deal. Certainly nothing Romney or Gingrich could do. Certainly nothing either of the Bushes did. It exists. I live with it. Personally, I would never choose to support an abortion; there are plenty of people willing to adopt. So no, he’s not perfect, but I believe In most other regards, Obama gets an A+. JMJ – That’s nonsense, please go back to the kiddie table and finish your dinner.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 11:13 AM By Abeca Christian
The only option is to have a society where great morals and common decency matters, a Christians nation under one God! Then if that is the case, we will vote in decent Presidents! In what I have discovered through facts morally, Obama is not a decent president.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 11:31 AM By Larry
Peter: What is gratuitously asserted can be just as gratuitously denied, and I will do so. Your argument that “abortion is here to stay” is rubbish.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 11:42 AM By Canisius
@Peter your typical snide liberal responses is one of main reason why I have nothing but contempt for the Left.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 11:50 AM By MD
Peter-I am baffled that you support, trust and promote a man who supports the killing of babies. Look at President Obama’s voting record. He not only supports abortion, but late term abortion and voted for a bill while in Chicago that if a baby is born alive after a botched saline abortion, to leave the baby outside the womb without medical attention until he/she dies. How can you trust a person who votes in this manner? The president is supposed to be the voice of the people, he/she is supposed to defend the liberties of American people. I personally cannot trust a man who promotes the destruction of the weakest people. This speaks highly of his character and shows that he does not value human dignity. Why would a person like this care for the poor, servitude, neglected or abused? Look at the medical bill he ran through congress and continues to support. It violates civil liberties and the freedom of religion, not to mention human dignity in the essence of life. You are right, one president may not be able to stop abortion, but in Obama’s case, he is sure doing a lot to ensure it not only stays legal, but is funded by tax payer dollars and anyone who objects has their civil liberties denied. God Love You.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 12:17 PM By Bud 
PETER, How wonderful to hear your ignorant statements about which I doubt you have a clue.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 12:53 PM By Life Lady
OK so Peter was looking for 5 minutes of attention, and he got it. Must be hard to be so needy. Knowing we are mostly Catholics, we waste our time giving him a lecture, and he gets to say “see, made you look!” Must be stinkin’ to be peter. OK, so, that was my 2 seconds. Now, We all know that Obama must be defeated in the upcoming elections. Pray about it.

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 3:23 PM By Kenneth M. Fisher
Peter, “Personally, I would never choose to support an abortion”, B.S., you do so every time you vote for a pro-abortion politician! God bless, yours in Their Hearts, Kenneth M. Fisher

Posted Thursday, January 26, 2012 9:08 PM By Maryanne Leonard
peter, you are obviously not Catholic, and there are so many other places on the net where people much like yourself would be interested in hearing from you. This is, however, a website where faithful Catholics with good hearts enjoy sharing their views and insights, even though we may differ with one another, it is in good faith. I see nothing in your posts that suggests either the word “good” or the word “faith.” It is easy to see where you are coming from, and where you are headed if you continue on your present journey. It is obvious that you are not interested in learning about the Catholic faith for your own personal salvation, I would like to wish you well on that journey and help you on your way – but away from this blog. I will pray for you and pray too that the evil, Satanic grip that has hold of your mind will be overcome and that you will one day see the light.

Posted Saturday, January 28, 2012 9:38 AM By k
California already has compulsory education until 18. So does Hawaii and D.C. There are others but most states only require it until the age of 16, some 17. Also, as an aside, California makes homeschooling very difficult compared to some other states.

Posted Sunday, January 29, 2012 5:44 PM By Abeca Christian
One has to realize that the majority of homosexuals aren’t interested in saving babies, they are more interested in voting in politicians who will carry out their so called gay rights. Their sexual rights are more important than voting in pro-life politicians. They don’t care to compromise anything else, as long as their so called rights are imposed upon others.

Posted Sunday, January 29, 2012 10:04 PM By Anne T.
I was graduated from high school at seventeen in the early sixties. What would have President Obama done with those like me? Some students who have the ability, talent, love for learning and are in areas where the public schools have not been destroyed yet are ready to be graduated even earlier than seventeen. His “put every student in one pot” theory does not hold water.

Posted Monday, January 30, 2012 1:14 PM By Anne T.
Oops! I read too hurriedly. I missed the “until they graduate section”. Therefore, the compulsary part for attending state, or I hope private schools, seems to be the objection.

Posted Monday, January 30, 2012 1:34 PM By Anne T.
God really does humble us when we are proud. I guess I asked for that one. After all it is he who gives us all our talents and abilities, and it is he who opens up opportunities. All praise be to God alone.

Posted Monday, January 30, 2012 3:09 PM By Anne T.
A correction, “compulsory” not “compulsary”. The older I get the stronger my glasses get, and they do play tricks on me when I look through them a certain way. That is my excuse sometimes anyway. So much for having been graduated at seventeen; it does not do me much good now. (Loads of laughs.)

Posted Monday, January 30, 2012 8:44 PM By JLS
Anne T., you are quite well accomplished for a girl of seventeen.

Posted Monday, January 30, 2012 8:47 PM By JLS
Anne T., because of the high unemployment rate, it pays for the govt to keep kids in schools. Otherwise the social discontent pushes up the costs of maintaining public order (ie, more cops, more judges, more jails).

Posted Tuesday, January 31, 2012 2:27 PM By Anne T.
Thank you for the laugh, JLS. Yes, students need to be in school if they have not had a graduation, but some of the schools now are not good. Some Catholic schools are not good either. It seems according to this article that President Obama wants to make public school compulsoty for all children without any exceptions, or have I read the article wrong? Maybe that is why he is trying to force Catholic ran organizations to provide contraception and abortions in their health programs — to close Catholic schools that are really Catholic. I think that is why the home schoolers are unhappy. I am for choice in education. Students are all different. Some do well with phonics and such programs as Total Reading and others do not. Some do better with sight reading. Also, many public schools lack any really moral foundation because the people who run the schools are afraid that they might hurt someone’s feelings or get sued. Also, the teachers come from all kinds of backgrounds. It is impossible to please all of them and all of the parents in just one type of school. Finland and Korea supposedly have some of the top schools in the world, but the head of the Finnish schools said that he could not run the schools over here because there is so much ethnic diversity. Let face the facts and tell the truth — diversity can be good or bad. There is a tremendous lack of discipline in many public schools today. It was not the case when I went to public school, and we never heard of lock downs because a gunman might be on campus. Those kinds of things just did not happen back then, but abortion was illegal, too, back then. We are a different nation, and not all of it is good.

Posted Tuesday, January 31, 2012 2:50 PM By Anne T.
By the way, I went to public schools that were very ethnically diverse — Asian Americans, African-Americans, Latin Americans and European mixtures — but we still had a fairly Judeo-Christian foundation at that time with two parent families. Christmas carols were still sung in the school programs.

Posted Tuesday, January 31, 2012 7:10 PM By Kenneth M. Fisher
JLS,, 8:47 PM Now that is a way to look at it that I have heard before but is probably at least partially correct! God bless, yours in Their Hearts, Kenneth M. Fisher

Posted Tuesday, January 31, 2012 10:45 PM By JLS
Parents and parishes need always to redouble their efforts to prepare, nurture and provide their children with faith, so that those among them more inclined to wage spiritual warfare and defense of faith are well equipped … send a few of these into public schools (there are) and this is one big way of converting the nations and every soul who lives.

Posted Tuesday, January 31, 2012 10:49 PM By JLS
Anne T., I don’t think the problem is ethnic diversity (ie, race and culture) but hostile attitude towards education (reading, writing, math, science, trades, physical development, history, language) that rips at the school system’s efforts. Many people hate education, and rebel against the law locking them in a school daily.

Posted Wednesday, February 01, 2012 9:57 AM By Anne T.
JLS, regarding your post of Jan. 31 at 10:49 PM, that is part of the problem too, but having students in the same schools with so many different religions and ethnic traditions can add to the problem since people fight over those issues.

Posted Wednesday, February 01, 2012 4:23 PM By Anne T.
JLS, concerning your post of Jan. 31 at 10;45 PM, you do make a good point. One of my favorite teachers in public highschool was an atheist, and we students who believed in God had more fun trying to convince him there was a God. It made for some very lively debates, and he was very good natured about it. No one could read Edgar Allen Poe as he did. He had a crippled leg, and I often wonder if he blamed God for that happening.