Home : Legal : 2016 Issues


The information on this page is provided for informational purposes only. It is not to be construed as legal advice or counsel.

  • 2016: HB 251 Education - Home Instruction Programs - Participation in Clubs and Activities

    This bill would allow a homeschool children to participate in specified clubs and activities beginning on January 1, 2017 and authorize the State Department of Education to adopt new regulations to implement this law.

    Get the latest update on HB 251 from the General Assembly.

    Status: This bill died after its House Ways and Means Committee hearing on Feb. 11, 2016.

    What You Can Do:Write to the House Ways and Means Committee members to express your opinion of this bill.

    Important to Know: During his testimony before the House Committee, the Bill's sponsor, Delegate West, spoke favorably of having MSDE implement testing requirements to ensure that homeschool students are academically eligible to participate in any and all clubs, sports, and other activities.


  • 2016: SB 909 - HB 1488 Service, Stipends, and Scholarships - Maryland Corps Program - Established

    This bill would establishing the Maryland Corps Program; providing for stipends of up to $15,000 for corps participants and one-time scholarships of up to $6,000 for corps participants who complete the Program that provides them with meaningful service opportunities that address social needs.

    Get the latest update on SB 909 from the General Assembly.

    Get the latest update on HB 1488 from the General Assembly.

    Status: The General Assembly voted to pass HB 1488. It was signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan on May 19, 2016.

    What You Can Do: Write to the House Appropriations Committee members and to your State Senator to request that they amend this bill to include language that allows homeschool graduates to be eligible to participate WITHOUT having to obtain a GED, first.

    Important to Know: This bill would fund approximately 100 Maryland Corp participants between the ages of 17 - 23, who have not already obtained a vocational, Associates, or Bachelor's degree or certificate. The current language bars homeschool graduates from applying, unless they first obtain a GED, which, in essence, invalidates the quality of the homeschool course of study they have already completed.


  • 2016: SB 595 Education - Middle School Students - Awarding of Credit

    The original bill would have allowed students who have completed the 5th grade to be eligible for acceptance at public institutions of higher education for special admission. It would repeal the requirement that specified students must earn a specified score on a specified test in order to be be accepted. And, it would authorize middle school students to participate in dual enrollment programs.

    The amended bill strikes all of the original language and is simplified to state:

    A county board whall award credit to a middle school student for any course for which a high school student would be awarded credit if the middle school student meets the same requirements as the high school student.
    Get the latest update on SB 595 from the General Assembly.

    Status: This General Assembly passed this bill. It was signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan on May 28, 2016.

    What You Can Do: Write to your elected House Representatives to express your support for this amended bill.

    Important to Know: Senator Rosapepe, the sole sponsor, drafted the original bill without consulting any special interest groups, such as statewide or county gifted advocacy groups; PTAs; or other stakeholders, aside from the Maryland State Department of Education. By eliminating the need for middle school students to enter early college without having taken a placement test, such as the SAT, there is no way of knowing if students are truly ready for early college classes. Furthermore, without funding or a directive in place, adolescents will be placed in adult learning environments without the proper social-emotional support to help the child thrive as a whole person. Senator Rosapepe presented one parent with supportive testimony at the Feb 24 Senate Committee Meeting. The Association of Maryland Community Colleges submitted written testimony opposing the bill.


MDHSA recognizes that some homeschool families have children enrolled in traditional school settings, as well as those who are being educated at home. In addition, we understand that some families anticipate their homeschool children entering public school at some point in future - whether it's due to economic reasons or the choice to take dvantage of academic or sports related opportunities. As a courtesy to these families, we include certain legislative updates regarding public school issues.



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