Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Home School Rally

*Note - Gov. Perry frequently departs from prepared remarks.
Wednesday, April 06, 2005  •  Speech

Thank you, Tim (Lambert), for those kind words and for all of your outstanding work to equip, inform and speak out for home school families across Texas.

It is an honor to be here with some of Texas’ most gifted students...
...and some of Texas’ best teachers...
...the members of the Texas Home School Coalition.

I am proud to be governor of a state that is home to more home school families than any other state in the nation...
...almost 100,000 strong and growing...
...and I was proud to officially declare this week Home Education Week in Texas.

As a product of public schools...
...and a public school parent...
...I believe in the value of a public education. 

But while every child is entitled to a public education...
...public education is not entitled to every child.

I am committed to improving public education because for the vast majority of our children, it is their only ticket to a future of opportunity.

But at the same time, I recognize that public education may not be the best choice for every family. 

Our commitment must be to ensuring the best education possible for every child... period. 

In some cases the best option is the local public schools or a charter school... other cases a private or religious setting...
...and in many cases the best educational option for children is a classroom in the home.

Whatever decision is made...
...I believe every parent must have the freedom to make it. 

And for those who choose to teach their children at home...
...government regulation must always stop at the front door.

I am proud of the steps we have taken in Texas to protect the freedoms of home school families. 

Last year, the Texas Education Agency distributed a letter to every school district in the state that clarifies the rights of home schoolers and the process for awarding transfer credits.

In 2003, we passed a law that requires state colleges and universities to use the same admission standards for all students...
...regardless of the type of school they graduated from.

And in this session of the legislature, my message to those who would attempt to erode the freedoms of home school families is clear:...
...don’t waste your time or the ink in my veto pen.

Home schools work because parental involvement is essential to a child’s success...
...and no one is more involved than those parents who sacrifice so much to teach their child at home.

Your investment in your child’s education will not only have a tremendous impact on his or her future... but the future of this entire state.

I thank you for your commitment to education, and may God bless you.

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