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View Full Version : Parents told they must stop HS'ing


Jackie
03-01-2008, 09:21 AM
When I read the headline, I thought it was another story from Germany. NOPE! It's in California.

http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=57679

Jo Anna
03-01-2008, 09:43 AM
What the heck. I cannot believe that they could do that. I thought it was our right as parents to choose what is best for our children. If I was them I would move out of that state asap.
Also I don't believe that that bill 777 is worth the paper they wrote it on. I mean exposing young children to that on a reg. basis will surely screw them up.
I feel so bad for that family.

Actressdancer
03-01-2008, 09:47 AM
Whoah..... I pray HSLDA intervenes quickly and can turn this around. This could set a dangerous precedent state-wide.

Emma's#1fan
03-01-2008, 10:58 AM
Interesting! I am wondering what option the parent was homeschooling under. Not that it would matter. I hope HSLDA helps out too.

bunnytracks
03-01-2008, 11:30 AM
:shock: My jawdropped. I hope that this gets overturned or found unconstitutional otherwise I see a bad trickle effect on us all. :mad:

amylynn
03-01-2008, 12:06 PM
Those poor kids are being "deprived" of situations in public school?! What crap! That's why the family is hs'ing in the first place! What gives a judge the right to say, this experience is more beneficial to your child then the one you are providing! :x These kind of htings make me so angry!

Amy

DizneeTeachR
03-01-2008, 12:49 PM
I hope they get this overturned....we (especially CA) is starting to lose what this nation stands for FREEDOM!!!

CrystalCA
03-01-2008, 07:17 PM
Well Jackie..as you know I had to dig deeper to really "believe" this story. What I found was not a simple case.
The eldest of the 3 children , that is involved in this case, turned in the father for " physical and mental abuse by the father". When Childrens services appear they found the children homeschooling to be" lousy, meager and bad".
The father did not deny any of this!!
When confronted by the question of why they homeschooled he 1st said, because of CA, then because of religious reasons and then finally "schools are full of snitches".
The court ruling was for the safety of the children in that home not just because they homeschool.
Please read the link:

http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/documents/B192878.DOC

I don't agree with the court saying that an uncreditialed parent could not homeschool their own children but in this case of (alleged) abuse I believe the children needed to be in a public school, maybe the children could have received help sooner.

Actressdancer
03-01-2008, 07:29 PM
Well Jackie..as you know I had to dig deeper to really "believe" this story. What I found was not a simple case.
The eldest of the 3 children , that is involved in this case, turned in the father for " physical and mental abuse by the father". When Childrens services appear they found the children homeschooling to be" lousy, meager and bad".
The father did not deny any of this!!
When confronted by the question of why they homeschooled he 1st said, because of CA, then because of religious reasons and then finally "schools are full of snitches".
The court ruling was for the safety of the children in that home not just because they homeschool.
Please read the link:

http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/documents/B192878.DOC

I don't agree with the court saying that an uncreditialed parent could not homeschool their own children but in this case of (alleged) abuse I believe the children needed to be in a public school, maybe the children could have received help sooner.


I'm so glad you were able to find more. I looked and looked online but came up empty.

I still think it's a dangerous precedent. I hope they appeal and the language of the ruling is changed. I don't care about the outcome, just the language.

dawninns
03-01-2008, 08:06 PM
I generally have a really hard time with giving any credibility to WND reports and dig as well Crystal. Thanks for the info. It does seem there's a real issue with homeschooling here however...But also that the case is much more complicated then WND would lead people to believe.

Emma's#1fan
03-01-2008, 10:43 PM
Thanks for the other link. I am with Amie. Hopefully the wording is changed.

Jackie
03-01-2008, 11:11 PM
Thanks, Crystal! I was hoping someone from CA would know a bit more. I hadn't been able to find anything more on it!

becky
03-02-2008, 02:34 PM
I also wondered what the parents had done to have it get this far.

ChelC
03-02-2008, 06:45 PM
Be careful blaming parents until you are sure you have all the facts. I wonder how quickly some of us could be painted as bad parents and incompetent educators based on some officials warped opinion. If they are indeed abusive parents, then the issue should not be homeschool. This could be VERY bad for all homeschoolers. Unfortunately the state views our children as public property.

It's easy for us to dismiss for reasons which may or may not be true, but don't forget the same will be true for the general public when that wolf is at your door.

KrisRV
03-02-2008, 08:06 PM
Crystal, thanks so much for looking this up.

P.H.
03-02-2008, 08:07 PM
ChelC, we came out at the same place on this one! Sometimes I think the wolf is closer than we'd like to think, and any time homeschooling can be linked to irresponsibility the better (for the wolf)--even though that's far from the norm in real homeschooling.

ochumgache
03-02-2008, 09:42 PM
If they are indeed abusive parents, then the issue should not be homeschool.


That's what I was thinking. The father was accused of physical and mental abuse, but the entire court record was about homeschooling. Shouldn't he be answering to the abuse charges? Or are they considering the fact that he homeschools his children abuse?

Ava Rose
03-03-2008, 04:50 PM
THanks for the info. However, homeschooling has nothing to do with abuse. The more the two get put together the worse it will be. I have sympathy for any child in an abusive situation. I never think it would be allowed. yet, there is a part of me that gets ticked off that fingers are pointed at homeschoolers while many many children attending ps are still being abused. Clean up the kids "they" are responsible for first and then you can come knocking on my door.

becky
03-03-2008, 05:23 PM
The problem comes in when abusive, neglectful parents use hsing to hide their crime.

Jackie
03-03-2008, 05:34 PM
Was anything presented that showed these parents to be abusive and neglectful? There's plenty of kids in ps who have abusive, neglectful parents hiding their crimes. It's rare that hs'ing is used like that.

Actressdancer
03-03-2008, 05:40 PM
It's rare that hs'ing is used like that.

I was thinking about this very thing earlier (because of this thread). And I realized that unless I loved my children dearly, the thought of being around them 24/7 would drive me batty. lol. If I was a neglectful parent, I'd send them away for 8 hours a day.

[btw, I am in NO WAY saying that sending children is neglect, just that it's a convenient way to ignore your children if that's what you want to do. I hope this is coming across right.]

Emma's#1fan
03-03-2008, 05:49 PM
Or are they considering the fact that he homeschools his children abuse?
Interesting point.

dawninns
03-03-2008, 08:51 PM
For those interested there's a blog by a Christian homeschooling mom called Principled Discovery (http://principleddiscovery.com/) and she has a post that explores this issue (http://principleddiscovery.com/2008/03/03/ca-and-the-states-interest-in-secular-education/) a little more and talks about the implications of this for homeschoolers in California.

Emma's#1fan
03-03-2008, 09:05 PM
Thanks for the link.

mom2ponygirl
03-03-2008, 10:12 PM
The ruling is disturbing and the wording will hopefully be remedied quickly, but the WND article is a crock. Here is a bit more background including the longstanding issues of abuse.
http://madisonamps.org/2008/03/02/knee-jerks/

gottsegnet
03-03-2008, 10:47 PM
I could be completely wrong here, but it seems the original reason the parents were brought into court were not relevant. It appears there were allegations of abuse and during the investigation, it was discovered they were homeschooling and were brought to court on this. The Superior court apparently found that their education was poor but that since homeschooling was protected by the constitution there was nothing they could do.

The decision by the appellate court only talks about this in a cursory fashion and I don't know the details. Instead, the opinion states,

"In this decision we consider whether parents can legally "home school" their children.

And the answer is "no." Not that these parents cannot homeschool, but that parents cannot homeschool unless they are certified or hire a certified tutor. Additionally they say:

Additionally, the Turner court rejected, and noted that courts in other states also rejected, the notion that parents instructing their children at homes come within private full-time day school exemption in then section 16624 (now section 48222). The court stated that a simple reading of the statutes governing private schools and home instruction by private tutors shows the Legislature intended to distinguish the two, for if a private school includes a parent or a private tutor instructing a child at home, there would be no purpose in writing separate legislation for private instruction at home.

I wish that this case didn't come to light with a family which is apparently having other problems. But the court's decision seems to deal directly with homeschooling as a practice rather than in this specific case.

I really hope I am wrong about that, but I read the court case before the WND article and I don't see any other way to read it.

mom2ponygirl
03-04-2008, 07:42 AM
The original case had charges of educational neglect in addition to the abuse/neglect charges. Evidently that is a common charge to add on in abuse cases. The appeals judge that heard the case went off on homeschooling for some unknown reason. What he did was bizarre and potentially damaging to hs'ing in CA. There are legal remedies being discussed and I think it will be addressed soonl. I just think WND does hs'ing a disservice by portraying this family as a typical hs'ing familiy being unfairly persecuted. The judge stepped out of bounds, but the family was in court to begin with due to their long history of abuse and neglect.

gottsegnet
03-04-2008, 12:07 PM
I agree about WND. : )

I don't know the case history...only what was written in the decision. It seems from there that there was an allegation of abuse and that is where they discovered the family homeschooling. At that point they went to court, where the court found that their hmeschooling, however poor, was constitutionally protected.

I don't know...that is just the way the decision reads to me.

Jackie
03-04-2008, 08:06 PM
Here's HSLDA's comments, as well as the court's decision. This is a VERY serious situation. And I think they have been waiting for a person they felt they could "legitimately" take on. I've read the abuse reports, and don't see any evidence given to support it. That's NOT to say it hasn't taken place, but it seems to me that the daughter Rachel is being rebellious, and the courts are letting her. If abuse has taken place, the parents need to be held accountable. But if NOT, the courts have no right to interfere.

http://www.hslda.org/hs/state/ca/200803030.asp

Lee
03-05-2008, 09:48 AM
If you belong to HSLDA you're getting emails from them and some have been on this topic. They state that they did not know anything about this until after the decision was handed down and now they are busily trying to unwind this and correct the damage that has been done. I sure hope that they can.

dawninns
03-06-2008, 06:06 AM
Court records are here: http://209.85.173.104/search?q=cache:-gfLatRwHh8J:www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/nonpub/B192601.DOC+JD00773&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=1&gl=us

The Superior court apparently found that their education was poor but that since homeschooling was protected by the constitution there was nothing they could do.

How is homeschooling is protected by the constitution? Children have a right to an education and parents have the right to instruct their children in their religious beliefs but homeschooling is not addressed.

One more thing about this is that California hs no provision for homeschoolers. There is nothing in the law about them. There is a private school loophole but frankly, it seems to me the HSLDA or state homeschooling situations perhaps should have seen something like this coming awhile ago had should have been lobbying for much clearer legislation long before this.

dawninns
03-06-2008, 06:12 AM
Another good blog post on the matter...California Update (http://justenough.wordpress.com/2008/03/04/california-update-or-its-not-illegal-to-homeschool/)

Jackie
03-06-2008, 08:02 AM
Well, Dawn, I agree that they SHOULD have seen it coming. but what happens here when someone brings up an issue about what might happen to HS'ing in the future? There's always a good group that says, "Oh, but it could NEVER happen HERE!!! We're too strong!" No, we're not! The government is slowly being taken away from the people, and the Powers that Be make all decisions FOR us. I honestly don't think I will legally be able to hs my youngest through all twelve grades.

dawninns
03-06-2008, 12:27 PM
There's always a good group that says, "Oh, but it could NEVER happen HERE!!! We're too strong!"

That's a really good point!

I think that brings up a good point about stayng aware and in touch with state groups. I'm specifically mentioning state groups because they really, more then the HSLDA often is, are the ones on the ground helping to shape legislation and lobby for change.

Which makes a problem for me. I haven't joined a provincial organization...I probably should.

Jackie
03-06-2008, 01:03 PM
The state organization (CHEO) really does work hand-in-hand with HSLDA. I don't think either could be as effective without the other. CHEO will get wind of something, and will contact HSLDA. CHEO and HSLDA both work to contact whoever needs to be contacted, but then HSLDA has the legal clout to write up briefs, etc.

Laja656
03-06-2008, 03:54 PM
There is a private school loophole but frankly, it seems to me the HSLDA or state homeschooling situations perhaps should have seen something like this coming awhile ago had should have been lobbying for much clearer legislation long before this.

I found this statement interesting... so I did a little poking around.... which led me to something even MORE interesting. The following is copied from an article written in 2002:


The State of California is warning parents that they cannot educate their children at home without acquiring a professional teaching credential.

...legal defenders of home-based education argue that "home-schooling" is not even mentioned in California law and is legal under a statute that allows any parent to operate a "private school," even if the student body amounts to one.

Nevertheless, on July 16, the California education department issued a memo that stated:

"In California, home-schooling – a situation where non-credentialed parents teach their own children, exclusively, at home whether using correspondence courses or other types of courses – is not an authorized exemption from mandatory public school attendance."

This is pure deception, contends home-school legal advocate Roy Hanson, director of the Lincoln, Calif.-based Private and Home Educators of California.

"One of the things the school district obviously is trying to do is use this to frighten people into joining the public school program," he said.

The memo, printed on the stationery of state Superintendent of Public Instruction Delaine Eastin, informed local educators of a new procedure that private schools must use to excuse their students from public school attendance. Private schools are required to file an affidavit for that purpose between Oct. 1 and Oct. 15 each year. The new method allows them to file via the Internet, directly with the state office.

The July 16 memo's reference to home-schooling continues:

"Furthermore, a parent's filing of the affidavit required of a private school does not transform that parent into a private school. Therefore, those parents who home-school their children are operating outside the law, and there is no reason for them to file an affidavit."

Michael Smith, president of the Home School Legal Defense Association in Virginia, is amazed by the state's position.

"It's really absurd when you think about it," he said, "because California, supposedly this forward state, would be the only state in the union that would require home-schoolers to be certified teachers."

The state's interpretation of the law has been communicated in various ways for about 10 years and is designed "to intimidate people not to home-school," said Karen Taylor, president of the California Homeschool Network

In spite of the July memo, according to Taylor, home-schooling families will continue this year as usual.

"They can say anything they want to, but the law has not changed," she said. "That is the important thing."

But the memo is being taken seriously by local education administrators.

The San Diego County Office of Education sent a letter Aug. 2 to "private school administrators" – which includes home-schooling families – informing them of "recent and urgent information" regarding the filing of private school affidavits. The fourth paragraph directs their attention to the July 16 memo's warning about home-school instruction.

The San Diego County letter concludes that, "As a result, non-credentialed parents who have home-schooled their children in the past can no longer file affidavits."

Without an affidavit, the letter warns, "your child will be considered truant."

Enclosed with the letter was a list of area programs with "credentialed home-school teachers that can assist you with your home schooling efforts." These are home-school programs conducted with oversight from the local public school district, said Smith, including charter schools and independent study cooperatives.

Hanson said, however, that on Thursday he and other home-school defenders received assurances from a new attorney with the Department of Education, Roger Wolfertz, that the state must accept an affidavit from any parent who desires to teach at home. Wolfertz made that clarification at a meeting of the California State School Attendance Review Board, an advisory body to the superintendent of public instruction.

Will home-schooling families in California be informed that despite the July 16 memo and other communiqués, they can file their affidavits as usual and continue homeschooling?

"We don't expect that," said Jim Davis, legislative liaison for Hanson's group.

Have California parents been deliberately misinformed by the state regarding the legality of home-schooling?

"I would go so far as to say this, they probably have been deceived in the past, and they're being even more deceived now," said Hanson.

The California Homeschool Network's Taylor agrees that the state has been putting out false information "to intimidate people not to home-school." She speculates that the motivation is money.

Hanson explained that funds are allotted according to how many students are enrolled. Each school-age child that does not enroll in the local public school represents lost potential income of $4,000 to $6,000.

California home-school legal defender Gary Kreep, president of the U.S. Justice Foundation in Escondido, near San Diego, agrees that funding is a motivation for rejecting home-schooling, but also believes that some officials don't like home-schoolers because they are independent thinkers.

Home-school watchers in California say recently retired Department of Education attorney Carolyn Pirillo, deputy counsel to the superintendent, was the primary influence behind the state's insistence that home-schooling by parents without a teaching certificate is illegal.

Department of Education communications coordinator Nicole Winger told WorldNetDaily she was not prepared to comment on the state's position on home-schooling but believes the July 16 memo stating that it is not legal without certified teachers "speaks for itself."

The U.S. Justice Foundation's Kreep said his group and others, including the Homeschool Legal Defense Association, are discussing what to do about California's threat to home-schooling.

Kreep said he is concerned that the state will crack down on home-schoolers en masse unless pre-emptive action is taken.

"If we wait for an attack where they are going after homeschoolers in 15 or 16 different counties at the same time, there are not going to be enough resources to fight that," he said.

Kreep noted that he has been involved in the legal defense of some home-schooling families against school districts. But so far, according to Smith, California generally has not enforced its stated position on home-schooling.

"Most school districts don’t have the time or stomach to do it," Smith said. "They kind of figure well, if these kids are being educated we've got bigger fish to fry. And district attorneys, city attorneys don't see this as a high priority."

But Smith emphasized, "It's not because the state hasn't tried. They have, they've tried to get impetus in prosecutions. They just haven't gotten it."

The Homeschool Association of California – which calls the state's interpretation of the education law "fatally flawed" – is convinced that any court hearing a case against a home-schooling family would have to rule in the family's favor.

But the association advises home-schooling families and their friends to not wage a campaign of phoning, letter-writing and e-mailing, believing "these actions can have a very serious negative effect."

"In all likelihood," the group's statement said, "these officials sincerely believe they are correct ... . We think it unlikely that they will revisit their interpretation of the law because hundreds of citizens who aren't lawyers tell them they’re bad and wrong. To the contrary, it will only make them mad. We have seen several instances where this public pressure has, in fact, made things turn out worse for the families involved."

Taylor said her California Homeschool Network has no plans at the moment to challenge the state.

"I think it might be premature to have legal action now," she said. "Those of us in California plan on continuing to home-school, so we will be filing as we always have. We will not back down."

3angelsmom
03-06-2008, 04:00 PM
:shock: My jawdropped. I hope that this gets overturned or found unconstitutional otherwise I see a bad trickle effect on us all. :mad:

I hope it gets overturned too, I just received this in my email.....
California parents without teaching credentials can no longer home school their children, according to a recent state appellate court ruling.
“Parents do not have a constitutional right to home school their children,” Justice H. Walter Croskey wrote in a Feb. 28 opinion for the 2nd District Court of Appeals. Noncompliance could lead to criminal complaints against the parents, Croskey said.

This is just a portion of the article from the Bakersfield News site. I really hope and pray that this is overturned.

gottsegnet
03-06-2008, 05:21 PM
Laja656,

Interesting quote. Here's another one from HSLDA's Michael Donnelly...this was at an event hosted by German homeschoolers fighting for educational liberty over there:

Another political approach may be to use the existing laws and try to apply other creative approaches to allowing Homeschooling. For example--in California, the most populated state in America, Homeschooling is technically illegal. Why do I sat that when there are more than 150,000 people in CA alone who do homeschool? It is because they do it under the private school regulations--there is no homeschool law or exception in CA. Californians simply register as a private school under existing California private school law. Now this may or may not be possible in some German state. But it may be possible in others especially if you can gain the cooperation of government officials in the ministries of education.

It seems to me at least there is a recognition here that homeschoolers were operating under a loophole they knew could be closed. As to why they didn't try? There is always the problem of it backfiring. HSLDA is not all-powerful and they have much more established "enemies" with more money and a larger membership, not to mention the fact that most Americans do still think there should be tighter restrictions on homeschooling.

gottsegnet
03-06-2008, 05:22 PM
I'm sorry I can't post links here but if you are curious about the speech, I will link to it in my post for tonight on my blog. : )

Jackie
03-06-2008, 06:21 PM
I'm looking forward to it! (And if you keep posting, you'll soon be able to post links! :wink:)

TeacherMom
03-07-2008, 12:46 PM
Wow, the governator messed up big time, he will not only have Christians but other religions especially musluim communities after this law. They are very strict moral people!
Speaking of the one forcing schools to present such things that are false as truths.

gottsegnet
03-07-2008, 05:37 PM
The governator didn't mess up. This is what he said:

Every California child deserves a quality education and parents should have the right to decide what’s best for their children. Parents should not be penalized for acting in the best interests of their children’s education. This outrageous ruling must be overturned by the courts and if the courts don’t protect parents’ rights then, as elected officials, we will.

Channel 13 news

I think that regardless of what implications this decision has, now is a better time to fight it than earlier, when the political landscape was different.

TeacherMom
03-07-2008, 07:43 PM
OO Cool,,, !!! GO governator! haha!