At New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms, we support educational choice. Regardless of family income or neighborhood, every student should have access to a quality education. While New York’s public schools, private schools, Christian schools, and charter schools all play important roles in children’s lives, some families opt out of institutional schooling and choose to educate their children at home. NYCF supports homeschooling and encourages the State to pass legislation that provides for fair and equal treatment of homeschoolers. One such bill is the Fair Practices Bill.
The Fair Practices Bill (S.841-Robach/A.43-Simanowitz) provides as follows:
The commissioner [of education] shall not require a pupil who has completed the requirements of a home instruction education or a non-public school program, and who has submitted test scores and other admissions material used by post-secondary institutions that qualify the pupil for admission to an institution of higher education, to obtain or submit proof of having obtained a general education development [GED] certificate or any accredited diploma.
The Fair Practices Bill further provides that notarized transcripts showing that a homeschooled student or a non-public school student has completed a high school education shall be accepted by colleges and universities, and that such students shall be “admitted on an equal basis with all other applicants, regardless of educational background.” Finally, the bill states that college degrees and diplomas may not be withheld from homeschooled students or non-public school students who have completed the applicable requirements.
The purpose of the Fair Practices Bill is to prevent homeschooled students and students from nonpublic schools from being subjected to unfair treatment. Neither homeschooled students nor students from non-public schools should be required to obtain GEDs in order to be admitted to colleges or universities. Furthermore, a student who has been admitted to a college or a university should not be required to obtain a GED before being allowed to graduate from that college or university. Therefore, New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms urges Members of the Legislature to support the Fair Practices Bill.