ATLANTA -- Home-schooled children say they are being unfairly
locked out of the state's public universities, and they showed
yesterday that they are gaining political allies.
Parents from across the state brought hundreds of
home-schoolers to the Capitol to let lawmakers know a little
about their rapidly growing movement and to persuade legislators
to pass a bill putting them on equal footing with other Georgia
One of the main targets is a University System Board of Regents
policy adopted last year mandating homeschoolers pass a series
of Scholastic Assessment Test II subject-area exams to be
considered for admission to a state college or university.
A Home Education Information Research analysis of 1996 Georgia
SAT II subject-area exam takers showed only 39 percent passed
all the sections required by the Board of Regents policy.
High school senior Justin Neal told a crowd at a Capitol rally
yesterday that he scored 1530 on the regular SAT out of a
possible 1600 but couldn't attend the University of Georgia or
Georgia Tech because he didn't take the SAT II subjectarea
He has received scholarship offers from out-of-state
institutions, but said, "Georgia says `no,' you're not good
The Board of Regents adopted the rules last year so they would
have a uniform policy for admitting home-schooled students.
Before the policy was set, individual schools used their own
criteria to admit home-schooled children.
Home-school associations immediately complained about the new
policy, and have threatened to sue the state, arguing that
barriers are being put up to keep their students out.
Public and private school students don't need to take SAT II
tests to gain admission to University System colleges.
However, Arlethia PerryJohnson of the Board of Regents said
state officials approved the policy in an attempt to carve out
an equitable means of comparing school students and the
The board has called for dramatic reductions in the number of
students entering the system who have graduated high school
without a college-prep diploma. …