Visit with an MLA: Ideas and suggestions
July 12, 2011
Last week Connie organized a group visit with her MLA. Her story was filled with valuable ideas that could be useful to others and she agreed to let me share our discussion and her ideas. Our e-mail discussion went something like this:
Connie: I am organizing a group meeting with home ed. parents in my area to visit our MLA this Wed. morning. Has AHEA been talking with Alta. Ed. people and, if so, what is
AHEA asking for in regard to the new regulations?
Patty: So great that you are getting together with your MLA!
AHEA met with Honourable Dave Hancock on June 20, 2011 and discussed the concerns outlined in the letter with him. We would encourage you to tell your MLA that home education has proven to be successful without significant government controls in place.
Encourage your MLA that the current Home Education Regulation is good and we want to keep it as is. Mr. Hancock alluded to making changes to the regulation, and we strongly encouraged him to keep it the same. In addition, AHEA is concerned that we will not be included in the initial revamping of the regulation, but again be ‘consulted’ after the fact. You can encourage your MLA to have AHEA involved in the initial stages of redrafting the regulation. I have available studies from Home School Legal Defense on the success of home education students and if you would like a copy of these to take to your MLA, we could make arrangements to get these to you.
God bless your meeting and let me know how it went. I have been keeping track of how meetings with various MLA’s are going so AHEA may gauge what our government is doing.
Connie: Thanks for your interest in our meeting. I am absolutely thrilled with how it went! Our MLA was very interested and receptive to us and our concerns. It was a small meeting room with a capacity of about 20 people and it was comfortably full.
Here is the agenda the Lord laid on my heart:
1. Introduction of ourselves (we went around the room saying who we were, how many children, and how many years home schooling)
2. Expressed concerns from AHEA about proposed regulations (stated the things from your email and letter then gave him a copy)
3. A couple and their five children were asked to come and share their story.
4. Question and answer period
5. Blessing of our MLA in his role and thank-yous to him
This was a really good idea the Lord had - a group meeting with the MLA, and I would encourage other parents in other ridings to do the same. I had the feeling, as did others, of strength in numbers, and we're sometimes intimidated to go and visit a "busy, important government official" on our own. All the parents in attendance found something valuable to say to contribute to the overall picture that was painted of homeschooling despite the success of the MLA meeting, however, I do realize we need to remain on our guard, standing together in prayer and in support of this important calling we have! Thank you to you, Patty, and the rest of the board members of AHEA for being such a strong voice for home education in this province! We appreciate you!
Patty: So excited that your meeting went so well, God is good.