School days should start for most Illinois children no later than while they are 6 years old, under a bill which has passed the Illinois House. While compulsory education in the state is currently for children ages 7 to 17, the bill specifies that children must be in school during the school year during which they turn 7.
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“We have a lot of truancy problems with younger children,” said the sponsor, State Rep. Sue Scherer (D-Decatur). “They want to stay home with Mom, or Mom’s not ready for them to go to school that day.” “A parent can make a very wise decision based on what they know is the maturity level of the child,” said an opponent, State Rep. Mike Bost (R-Murphysboro). “To roll that back is, once again, forcing the situation where we, the state, feel that we’re better than the parents themselves.”