The Chicago Tribune posted an article regarding a continuing effort to lower the Illinois compulsory school attendance age to 5.
Mandatory school age could fall from 7 to 5 in Illinois By Gary Marx and David Jackson
In a move aimed at countering Chicago’s crisis in K-8 truancy and absenteeism, state Sen. Kimberly Lightford has introduced legislation to lower Illinois’ compulsory school age from 7 to 5.
Senator Lightford is the Vice-Chair on the Senate Education Committee. The bill [SB 1307] is currently in the Assignments Committee, not yet assigned to the Education Committee. Representative La Shawn Ford apparently plans to co-sponsor the bill in the House. His indictment and legal status might affect that future possibility. But the Illinois Senate and House both have a Democrat Party super-majority. From the Tribune:
“If we’re going to change lives, we have to impact students at an early age. It’s the early years that make all the difference in education,” said state Rep. La Shawn Ford, D-Chicago, who plans to co-sponsor the bill in the House.
Illinois House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee Chair, Chapa-LaVia, offered a comment about homeschoolers and exemptions.
State Rep. Linda Chapa LaVia, D-Aurora, who is forming a top-level task force to address Chicago’s K-8 truancy and absenteeism, told the Tribune that she strongly supports lowering Illinois’ compulsory attendance age, although she could consider carving out an exemption for families who are home-schooling.
Illinois private schools are already exempt via the compulsory school attendance exemption in the statutes. But despite that, homeschoolers and other families do not need the extra complications from 2 more years of public school mandates. There are desperate Illinois funding scrambles from any source available to solve the state’s fiscal crisis. Some of that could land on homeschoolers’ backs. Illinois homeschoolers don’t need to be singled out from others, in a statute or otherwise.