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PAST LEGISLATION: THE 108th CONGRESS


Some of the bills currently before the 109th Congress were proposed previously in 2003-2004 in the 108th Congress. The following is a comparison of those bills.
All of the bills listed below can be found here


H.R. 2732
    H.R. 12    H.R. 282    H.R. 516    H.R. 615    S. 1793    H.R. 1261

 

1.  In the 108th Congress, Colorado Congressman Marilyn Musgrave. introduced, H.R.2732 , the Home Education Non Discrimination Act, otherwise known as HoNDA, (and Idaho Senator Larry Craig introduced its Senate counterpart, S.1562 ) to amend selected statutes to clarify existing Federal law as to the treatment of students privately educated at home under State law.  That bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Education Reform where it remained.  However, several parts of that bill were separately proposed as other bills in that session.

No such comprehensive bill has been introduced in the 109th Congress, although several parts of that bill that were separately introduced in the 108th Congress, also are before the 109th Congress.

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2.  In the 108th Congress, California Congressman Howard McKeon introduced H.R. 12, the Fed Up Higher Education Technical Amendments of 2003 to amend the Higher Education Act general definition of institution of higher education (IHE) to include one that admits as regular students those who have been home-schooled (as well as high school graduates or those with equivalency certificates), thus conforming it with provisions that make such home-schooled students eligible for student aid under HEA title IV. That bill was referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce where it remained.
In the 109th Congress, California Congressman Howard McKeon introduced H.R. 508, the Fed Up Higher Education Technical Amendments of 2005 to amend to the Higher Education Act of 1965 also to revise the HEA general definition of institution of higher education (IHE) to include one that admits as regular students those who have been home-schooled (as well as high school graduates or those with equivalency certificates), thus conforming it with provisions that make such home-schooled students eligible for student aid under HEA title IV.  That bill is currently before the Subcommittee on 21st Century Competitiveness.

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3.   In the 108th Congress, Michigan Congressman Peter Hoekstra introduced H.R. 282, the Education Freedom Act, to amend the Internal Revenue code of 1986 to allow a credit for contributions for the benefit of elementary and secondary schools.  A portion of that bill revised the IRS code to define “qualified elementary and secondary expenses” as including expenses for a “public, private, religious, or home school.”  That bill was referred to the House Ways and Means Committee where it remained.
Also in the 108th Congress, Texas Congressman Ron Paul introduced H.R. 612 to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow individuals a credit against income tax for tuition and related expenses for public and nonpublic elementary and secondary education. The bill defined a “qualified educational institution” as including “any private, parochial, religious, or home school.”  The bill was referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means where it remained.

In the 109th Congress, Texas Congressman Ron Paul introduced H.R .406, the Family Education Freedom Act of 2005.  It also amends the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow individuals a credit against income tax for tuition and related expenses for public and nonpublic elementary and secondary education. It also defines the term, “qualified educational institution” as meaning “any educational institution (including any private, parochial, religious, or home school).” That bill is currently before the House Ways and Means Committee.

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4.  In the 108th Congress, Minnesota Congressman Mark Kennedy introduced H.R.516 , a bill designed to amend the General Education Provisions Act provisions, which are also known as the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, or FERPA. The bill revised the definition of student to include home schooled students. Under the bill FERPA’s privacy provisions would apply to home schooled students. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce where it remained.

In the 109th Congress, Congressman Kennedy introduced a similar bill, H. R. 130, to amend the General Education Provisions Act to clarify the definition of a student regarding family educational and privacy rights.  That bill provides that FERPA applies to “any person educated at a home school (whether or not State law treats a home school as a home school or a private school).”  That bill is currently before the House Education and the Workforce Committee’s Subcommittee on Education Reform.

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5.  In the 108th Congress, Texas Congressman Ron Paul introduced H.R.615  to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow the Hope Scholarship Credit to be used for elementary and secondary expenses, including expenses for a home school.  That bill was referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means where it remained.

In the 109th Congress, Texas Congressman Ron Paul introduced a similar bill, H.R. 403, to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow the Hope Scholarship Credit to be used for elementary and secondary expenses, including expenses for a home school. That bill is currently before the House Committee on Ways and Means.


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6.  In the 108th Congress, Massachusetts Senator Edward Kennedy introduced  S.1793, a bill to provide for college quality, affordability, and diversity, and for other purposes. Among other things, that bill amended the Higher Education Act of 1965 (HEA) ostensibly to “limit” federal control over “any aspect of any private, religious, or home school”.  The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions where it remained.  In the 109th Congress, Ohio Congressman John Boehner introduced H.R. 609, the College Access and Opportunity Act of 2005, which also amends the Higher Education Act of 1965, also ostensibly to “limit” federal control over “any aspect of any private, religious, or home school.”  It also provides, “Nothing in this part shall be construed to encourage or require any change in a State's treatment of any private, religious, or home school, whether or not a home school is treated as a private school or home school under State law.”  That bill was reported out of committee on July 22, 2005 and is awaiting a vote on the floor of the House.
Also in the 109th Congress, Ohio Congressman John Boehner also introduced H.R. 507, the College Access and Opportunity Act of 2005.  That bill also contains the language that appears in H.R. 609 ostensibly to “limit” federal control over “any aspect of any private, religious, or home school.”  That bill is currently before the Subcommittee on 21st Century Competitiveness.

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7.  In the 108th Congress, California Congressman Howard McKeon introduced H.R. 1261, the Workforce Reinvestment and Adult Education Act of 2003, which included revisions to the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act Amendments of 2003.  That bill included an “exclusion” for home schools from participating in “an English language acquisition program, a family literacy education program, or an adult basic skills and family literacy education program.”  That bill was passed in the House and the Senate and went before a conference committee to resolve differences in the differing versions of the bill. In the 109th Congress, California Congressman Howard McKeon introduced H.R. 27, the Job Training Improvement Act of 2005.  That bill includes a provision regarding Adult Basic Skills and Family Literacy Education that contains language identical to the language regarding the “exclusion” for home schools that was contained in H.R. 1261.  That bill was passed in the House and is currently before the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

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