Missourians: Call now to protect parental rights HB 557

Call Now to Protect Parental Rights

Homeschooling in Missouri.

Help protect parental rights.

Senior Counsel Scott Woodruff answers questions and assists members with legal issues in your state. He and his wife homeschooled their children.

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

A bill that will protect the rights of Missouri parents, HB 557, needs your help! The bill passed strongly through the House, but it is being held up in the Senate because Senator Tom Dempsey, the President of the Senate, has not scheduled it for a vote.

Time is very short. The legislative session ends May 15!

Action Requested

Please call Sen. Dempsey at (573) 751-1141. Please ask him politely to schedule the bill for a vote. You can leave a message if he does not answer personally.

Please call either today (Thursday) or Monday. The legislature is closed tomorrow (Friday).

Your message can be as simple as: “Please schedule HB 557 for a vote. The Missouri Legislature has never passed a law protecting the rights of parents. Now it’s time to put the rights of parents in writing. It should not be left up to the whim of the courts.”


There are three types of rights: absolute, fundamental, and ordinary. The government cannot regulate absolute rights at all. It can regulate ordinary rights for virtually any reason. But it can restrict fundamental rights only if there is a compelling reason and a less restrictive option is not available. When a right is considered fundamental, the citizen has a very good chance of prevailing against government encroachment.

Parental rights were considered fundamental until a U.S. Supreme Court case in 2000, Troxel vs. Granville, refused to say that parental rights were still fundamental. This caused tremendous confusion among judges. Some continued to treat parental rights as fundamental; others began downgrading parental rights to ordinary.

If a state has not enacted a law stating that parental rights are fundamental, there is nothing to prevent a judge from downgrading parental rights in that state. Missouri is one of the states that has never passed a law protecting parental rights.

It is unacceptable for the legislature to “punt” this issue to judges. It’s time for Missouri to end its silence on how parental rights should be protected.

Thank you for standing with us for freedom!


Scott Woodruff
HSLDA Senior Counsel

P.S. We greatly value you and your support—it is a privilege to serve you! If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you consider taking a moment today to join or to recommend us as we defend the rights of homeschooling families? Join now >>

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