Galesburg Register-Mail March 6, 2009
LETTER: Bee should include homeschoolers
I am writing this letter to you because I would like to thank the Peoria Journal Star for graciously inviting the Knox County Homeschoolers once again to its Peoria County Spelling Bee. It has invited my son as well as all Knox County homeschoolers to its spelling bee for the last several years. It hosts a wonderful spelling bee giving all children in their area a chance to compete.
The spelling bee held in Knox County this year, just as last year, did not include the homeschoolers of Knox County. It is important for homeschoolers to have the same opportunities to compete as the public school children. Colleges and Universities look at the activities that your children are involved in. Since the Scripps Spelling Bee is a national competition, homeschoolers are allowed by law to compete at all levels of competitions. Also the state of Illinois considers homeschools as private schools in Illinois with the same rights as any private school in Illinois.
Lastly, we homeschoolers have double the financial burden of public school parents; not only do we pay taxes to a school that we do not send our children to, we also gladly pay for all the books, supplies, equipment, instructors, etc. for our own homeschool. We should not be shut out of any national competitions at local levels.
Again, I would like to thank Peoria Journal Star for hosting a wonderful spelling bee as they do every year. — Barbara Ferris, Dahinda