Report on legislative bills NHN was tracking this year

SB 228 – Student Right to Privacy bill. NHN supported this bill. However, the Senate Education Committee was not willing to bring the bill for a vote and instead agreed to amend two protective sentences into another “student privacy bill”. A sentence declaring that a student’s personally identifiable information and data “belongs” to the student was amended into SB 463. SB 463 was passed by the Senate. However, this protective language was DELETED by amendment by the Assembly Education Committee as was other protective language in the bill. A very watered down version of SB 463 was passed by the Assembly and “concurred with” by the Senate.

SB 25 – NHN opposed Section 2 of the original bill that authorized the Superintendent to “coordinate education programs for children from “Birth to Prekindergarten” was deleted. A modified version of SB 25 was passed and signed by the Governor. See “As Enrolled” by clicking the bill number.

SB 126 – NHN opposed language calling for “regulation and evaluation” of “any early childhood education and prekindergarten programs at both private and public schools”. NHN also opposed language in the bill allowing public school officials to “conduct a survey AT THE HOME of child whose primary language is not English”. In both cases the problematic language was removed by amendment. However, the amended bill was never brought for a vote and “died” in committee.

SB 117 – A bill adding two new vaccinations required for “school enrollment” also died in committee.

AB 221 – This bill does not affect homeschooling but was a “companion” bill to SB 463. The bill was intended to protect public school student information and data collected by the public school, the school district and the Department of Education but in reality was only a “sunshine bill”; meaning the DOE and local school districts must tell parents what info/data is being collected on their child and allow for “corrections” to the information/data to be made, as requested by the parent or student over the age of 18. Here again, there were many amendments houses to this bill before it was eventually passed and signed into law by the Governor.

SB 302 – The Educational Savings Account (ESA) bill made a surprise appearance on April 3rd. The bill was scheduled for hearing just before the deadline for bills to be heard in committee (if not heard they die). It was a “surprise” because the original bill was nearly totally rewritten by the sponsor of the bill, Senator Hammond, just prior to the meeting. NHN Officers had gone on record with Senator Hammond requesting that he protect HOMESCHOOL FREEDOM. However, although NHN Officers had been in constant contact with Senator Hammond on other bills he never informed us of his intent to use the homeschool law as a “vehicle” for students to receive tax-payer money from the state and the “controls” that go with it. Thankfully, Elissa Wahl was in attendance the day of the hearing and “opposed” the bill as written. NHN was able to work with Senator Hammond to protect those parents who DO NOT wish to receive money from the state. More information on the effect of this bill to be posted.

2015 Legislative Session

Dear Nevada Homeschoolers, 7/3/2015

NHN, once again, was very involved in this last legislature. Especially Barbara Dragon, who throughout the session almost single-handedly carried the weight of responsibility and action! Similar to a sports team there are times when the team is almost overwhelmed with injuries and rookies, and it’s the veteran who steps up to the plate at the most critical moments. Barb is our hero!

One issue that NHN worked on, that didn’t make it, is a privacy protection bill (SB 228) that declares that data belonging to and generated by a public, private or homeschool student belongs to that student, not to the government. NHN feels very strongly that this is critically important, and will continue to advance any efforts to get such a law passed. It is baffling sometimes to know how any legislator or anybody of any political persuasion (except those who advocate a totalitarian government) could oppose personal privacy. Clearly there are politicians who tell their constituents one thing, then vote the other way.

No doubt you’ve heard that Nevada has passed the most impressive, most amazing, law that allows parents to start an Educational Savings Account (ESA) for their child(ren). SB302 was a real challenge for NHN. Initially we opposed it because its initial wording blurred the lines between “true” homeschool parents who don’t want government money and the laws and regulations that accompany it, and those who are comfortable with accepting the money, laws and regulations. While we absolutely believe in parental choice in education, we also don’t want a law that forces regulations on freedom-loving individualistic homeschool families who are legally and effectively homeschooling their children. NHN worked with Senator Hammond, sponsor of SB302, who has been very supportive of homeschoolers. Our gratitude and thanks to Senator Hammond!

Our NHN website has been giving us fits lately, so right now I can’t give you a link to get more information. I’ll attach a document that NHN composed a couple of weeks ago that gives a thumb-nail sketch of what SB302 is (copied below). Essentially it is a new 4th type of legal schooling in Nevada: public, private, homeschooling, and an ESA opt-in child.

Also, below, I’d like to invite to read an article written January 6, 2011 by Dr. Brian Ray of NHERI (National Home Education Research Institute) entitled, What If? A Thought Experiment. NHN depends heavily on his research (as do most other homeschool advocacy groups and academics). I encourage you, if at all possible, to consider a donation to NHERI using the information below.

-Frank Schnorbus
Nevada Homeschool Network, Chairman

Statement of Explanation on SB 302 – Education Saving Account

An ESA Grant shall[1]be awarded to a qualified public school student whose parent enters into a written agreement with the State Treasurer[2]. This will be an ESA Grant “Opt-in Child”[3] and is not a homeschooled child[4]. The approved “participating entity”[5] from which the Opt-in Child will receive instruction[6] may be one or a combination[7] of the following:

  1. A “Grant School”, including;
    1. A licensed or exempt private school in this state[8];
    2. A private college or university, a state college or university, or a community college in this state[9];
    3. On-line schools that are not operated by the public school or the DOE[10];
  2. A “Grant Tutor”, which can be either a tutor or tutoring facility that is accredited[11]; or
  3. A “Grant Parent”
    1. Who has submitted to the school district or charter school in which the child was enrolled a Notice that the child is an approved ESA Grant Opt-in Child[12], and
    2. Complies with the requirements in SB 302 Section 12, Subsection 1, including ensuring that the child takes either a norm-referenced exam or an exam pursuant to NRS 389 in math and English language arts.

[1] SB 302 Sec. 11, Subsection 2

[2] SB 302 Sec. 7, Subsection 1

[3] SB 302 Sec. 15.1, Subsection 5 and Sec. 16.7, Subsection 1(c)

[4] SB 302 Sec. 7, Subsection 10 and Sec. 15.1, Subsection 3

[5] SB 302 Sec. 11, Subsection 1

[6] SB 302 Sec. 7, Subsection 1(a)

[7] SB 302 Sec. 7, Subsection 10; Sec. 8, Subsection 3; Sec. 9, Subsection 1(j); Sec. 11, Subsection 4; Sec. 15.1, Subsection 5

[8] SB 302 Sec. 11, Subsection 1(a)

[9] SB 302 Sec.11, Subsection 1(b) and Sec. 3.5, Subsections 1 and 2

[10]SB 302 Sec. 11, Subsection 1(c)

[11]SB 302 Sec. 11, Subsection 1(d)

[12]SB 302 Sec. 11, Subsection 1(e) and Sec. 16.4, Subsection 1

UPDATE

SB 228 did have a work session in the Senate Education Committee on Friday. However, due to the “complexities” of the bill it was not going to pass, so at our request, Section 1, subsections 1 and 2b were amended into SB 463, another student data bill.

We wish to thank Senators Gustavson and Denis for finding a way to get a pupil’s constitutional right to privacy regarding their student records hopefully put into statute. These are the two sections from which a new amendment will be written,

Section 1. Chapter 392 of NRS is hereby amended by adding thereto a new section to read as follows:
1. The legislature hereby declares that all personally identifiable information as well as the
education record of a pupil is protected as a right to privacy under the Constitution of Nevada and the Constitution of the United States. This act shall be called The Pupil Information Privacy Protection Act of 2015.

2. (b) Be deemed the property of the pupil who is the subject of that information if the pupil
is 18 years old or is under the age of 18 and is legally emancipated from the pupil’s parents, or the parent or guardian of the pupil if the pupil is under the age of 18.


SB 463 received a unanimous “Do Pass” and goes to the Senate floor for a vote. That may take a few days since the LCB is backlogged on adding amendments to bill.

We’ll do our best to keep you informed as quickly as possible on the progress of this bill as moves through the process.

Barbara Dragon