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Topic: CA homeschoolers ordered to attend school - UPDATE- 3/27

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Subject: CA homeschoolers ordered to attend school - UPDATE- 3/27
Date Posted: 3/5/2008 11:34 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2007
Posts: 4,588
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World Net article


and a link to HSLDA


(There is a link to the actual court opinion on the HSLDA page)


Last Edited on: 3/27/08 10:57 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 3/6/2008 1:47 AM ET
Member Since: 10/9/2006
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Last Edited on: 8/2/12 10:45 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/6/2008 2:02 AM ET
Member Since: 10/3/2007
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I read on another site that this family came to the attention of the court in the first place due to allegations of child abuse.  I don't know if that is true or not. Now I see in the document linked below that abuse allegations were what started this in the first place. It seems the issue has changed though.

Hopefully, all that needs to be known will be made known and the right decision for this family will be made.

However, I have always heard that it is legal for individual families to file as a private school to homeschool or to homeschool under the umbrella of a private school in the state of California.

Last Edited on: 3/6/08 3:13 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/6/2008 3:11 AM ET
Member Since: 10/3/2007
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Here's another link.  It seems this judge has an agenda that goes beyond this family. He would like to push his antihomeschooling agenda. As far as I can tell, education is not mentioned in the Constitution, so it is left up to the states. That must be why each state has their own laws regarding homeschooling.




Date Posted: 3/6/2008 8:45 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
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Last Edited on: 1/19/09 8:29 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/6/2008 6:39 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 12/10/08 1:15 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/6/2008 7:45 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
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Hi there!

I've been keeping up with this through HSLDA (Home School Legal Defense Association) e-mails.  The last one I just received listed two links that concerned homeschoolers may want to know about:

hslda.org/elink.asp  This link takes you to a petition that the HSLDA is inviting folks from any state to sign.  The petition will be used as support for a request to "depublish" the court's decision--so other courts can't use it for reference.

listen.family.org/findastation/  This link takes you to the Focus on the Family website, where you can find broadcast times for their program.  Dr. James Dobson (of Focus on the Family) will interview HSLDA chairman Mike Farris tomorrow (Friday) about the situation in California.  (If you can't find a station in your area that carries the program, you should be able to listen online.)

Date Posted: 3/6/2008 9:02 PM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2005
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I was just on my way to share those links :-) 

I don't know how much good online petitions do but I signed in hopes that it will make a difference.

This situation is just very scary.

Date Posted: 3/6/2008 9:08 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2007
Posts: 4,588
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I just received an email from HSLDA (cut & pasted below)

Response to California
Appeals Court Ruling:
‘Homeschooling is Illegal’

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

On February 28, 2008, the California Court of Appeals issued a ruling in a juvenile court proceeding that declared that almost all forms of homeschooling in California are in violation of state law. (Private tutoring by certified teachers remains an option.) Moreover, the court ruled that parents possess no constitutional right to homeschool their children.

This case involved a family with a 20-year history of litigation in the juvenile courts over the care of their children. Prior adverse decisions had been rendered by the courts.

This family was not a member of Home School Legal Defense Association. They were represented by court-appointed counsel throughout the proceeding. Since it was by law a confidential proceeding, to the best of our knowledge neither HSLDA nor any other legal advocacy organization had any knowledge that the right of all homeschoolers in California was depending upon the outcome of this family’s case.

There are two appellate options at this time.

First, we have been told that the family is appealing this decision to the California Supreme Court with their California counsel.

HSLDA will file an amicus brief on behalf of our 13,500 member families in California. We will argue that a proper interpretation of California statutes makes it clear that parents may legally teach their own children under the private-school exemption. However, if the court disagrees with our statutory argument, we will argue that the California statutes as interpreted by the Court of Appeal violate the constitutional rights of parents to direct the education and upbringing of their children.

HSLDA welcomes other organizations and persons to assist with the amicus process so that a full defense of home education, religious freedom, and parental rights can be given to the California Supreme Court.

The second appellate option is to seek to have this particular decision “depublished.” Depublication is a decision that can only be made by the California Supreme Court. If the Court determines that the decision should stand, regarding this family, on the facts presented, but that the general pronouncements of law for all of homeschooling should not be determined by this case, then the Court has the option of “depublishing” the Court of Appeal’s decision. This would mean that the case is not binding precedent in California and has no effect on any other family.

HSLDA will take the lead in an effort to seek to have this case depublished.

Homeschooling has offered a great opportunity for families to give their children a quality education with a moral and philosophical approach that is consistent with each family’s beliefs.

The ability to homeschool freely in California should not depend upon one family in a closed-door proceeding. All families should have the right to be heard since the rights of all are clearly at stake.


J. Michael Smith
HSLDA President

Date Posted: 3/6/2008 10:28 PM ET
Member Since: 10/9/2006
Posts: 88
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The first payment I make for supplies for the school year goes to HSLDA.  It is the best investment I can make insure our continued freedom to home school our children as we see fit.  Let's give them all the support we can.


Date Posted: 3/6/2008 11:18 PM ET
Member Since: 1/10/2006
Posts: 2,110
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That is absolutely terrifying!  My prayers are with you all fighting this.

 ETA:  My hubby and I just signed the petition.


Phooey on "if I lived in California, I'd find a big building for homeschoolers to meet, say I was teaching everyone with my teaching license, and we'd all have a big ol' homeschool-away-from-home!"

Last Edited on: 3/6/08 11:20 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/7/2008 1:02 AM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2007
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Check out this site for a petition to amend our Federal Constitution to protect our liberty to direct the upbringing and education of our children!


We were discussing this site in our homeschool support group tonight, and our state newsletter had mentioned it today also.

I am a California native, and will follow this ruling closely. Even though we live in Oklahoma, where liberty for homeschooling was written into the constitution at statehood, my parents still live in California. With their health, I could end up having to relocate our school there sometime soon.

Thanks for bringing this to our attention!


Date Posted: 3/7/2008 7:57 AM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2007
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Thankful we don't live there either!
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 3:23 AM ET
Member Since: 10/3/2007
Posts: 1,056
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Thanks for posting this.

Arnold is my hero.   ; - )   

Subject: A Different Perspective from NHELD
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 2:24 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2006
Posts: 181
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Here is a different perspective from NHELD's bulletin #60 dated 3/08/08. Quote from the beginning..


Did you know? that the sky is not falling in California? Homeschooling is still “legal” there, believe it or not.


    In recent days, there have been a rash of articles in the news proclaiming that a California court declared that parents no longer have a right to homeschool in that state. We caution everyone to go behind the headlines and to read for themselves the entire decision of the court in question. News outlets need to obtain readers and, quite often, provide only part of the story, or, provide their interpretation of the facts. Before believing everything that you read, try to go to the original source of the story, and read the original documents involved. Then, you can ascertain for yourself what the truth is.


You can read the full bulletin #60 here



Subject: Please sign the petition!
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 2:25 PM ET
Member Since: 5/4/2007
Posts: 15
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One good point for Arnold! ;) Please DO SIGN this! We live in Ca and homeschool.
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 4:15 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2006
Posts: 333
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Thanks for the updates.  I just signed and will have my hubby sign too.  That is when he gets back in from snow shoveling.  We are in the middle of a blizzard here.  Church for tomorrow has already been cancelled! 

Please keep us posted with any new developements.

Subject: Be Blessed
Date Posted: 3/12/2008 8:52 AM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2006
Posts: 91
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What an opportunity we have to show the beauty of living in a free country.

I live in FL but as G. Washington insisted ....we must see ourselves as Americans, not as Floridians (or whatever state you live in)

I am praying for you and thanking God for the opportunity to stand for what is right.




Date Posted: 3/12/2008 11:43 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 662
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Good news!

Here's an excerpt from my last HSLDA notice:

[California] State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell comes to the defense of homeschool families. "The California Department of Education policy will not change in any way as a result of this ruling. Parents still have the right to homeschool in this state," he said.

Just thought I'd pass it on!

(HSLDA will continue to follow through with the petition to the courts to depublish the decision, so that it can not be used as a precedent in the future.)

Date Posted: 3/27/2008 10:59 AM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2007
Posts: 4,588
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UPDATE: Here's the latest email I received from HSLDA:

>From the HSLDA E-lert Service...

Court of Appeal Grants Petition for Re-hearing
On March 25, the California Court of Appeal granted a motion for rehearing in the 'In re Rachel L.' case--the controversial decision which purported to ban all homeschooling in that state unless the parents held a teaching license qualifying them to teach in public schools.
The automatic effect of granting this motion is that the prior opinion is vacated and is no longer binding on any one, including the parties in the case.
The Court of Appeal has solicited a number of public school establishment organizations to submit amicus briefs including the California Superintendent of Public Instruction, California Department of Education, the Los Angeles Unified School District, and three California teacher unions. The court also granted permission to Sunland Christian School to file an amicus brief. The order also indicates that it will consider amicus applications from other groups.
Home School Legal Defense Association will seek permission to file such an amicus brief and will coordinate efforts with a number of organizations interesting in filing briefs to support the right of parents to homeschool their children in California.
"This is a great first step," said Michael Farris, chairman of HSLDA.
"We are very glad that this case will be reheard and that this opinion has been vacated, but there is no guarantee as to what the ultimate outcome will be. This case remains our top priority," he added. 
The HSLDA E-lert Service is a service of:
Home School Legal Defense Association
P.O. Box 3000
Purcellville, Virginia 20134
Phone: (540) 338-5600
Fax: (540) 338-2733
Date Posted: 3/27/2008 7:23 PM ET
Member Since: 7/6/2006
Posts: 184
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You guys come on across the country to Georgia!  We have great homeschooling laws and I bet you can get 3 houses for what you've got in equity in yours now!