A California appeals court ruling clamping down on homeschooling by parents without teaching credentials sent shock waves across the state this week, leaving an estimated 166,000 children as possible truants and their parents at risk of prosecution.
The Second District Court of Appeal ruled that California law requires parents to send their children to full-time public or private schools or have them taught by credentialed tutors at home.
"California courts have held that ... parents do not have a constitutional right to homeschool their children," Justice H. Walter Croskey said in the 3-0 ruling issued on Feb. 28.
"A primary purpose of the educational system is to train school children in good citizenship, patriotism and loyalty to the state and the nation as a means of protecting the public welfare," the judge wrote, quoting from a 1961 case on a similar issue.
Training is for dogs and horses, not for children. How could these judges assume that homeschooled children are not taught to be good citizens? Their parents don't vote? They don't call on their state representatives to support legislation? They don't have any desire to serve their country? What rot!
The ruling was applauded by a director for the state's largest teachers union.
"We're happy," said Lloyd Porter, who is on the California Teachers Association board of directors. "We always think students should be taught by credentialed teachers, no matter what the setting."
The teacher's unions want NO competition, no free market, no accountability at all. At first they pull in new members by scaring young teachers about the promise of legal counsel in case of lawsuit-happy parents, and then use their huge bargaining power to influence politicians and judges so as to eliminate any threat from their monopoly in the market.
Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute... said the appellate court ruling has set a precedent that can now be used to go after homeschoolers. "With this case law, anyone in California who is homeschooling without a teaching credential is subject to prosecution for truancy violation, which could require community service, heavy fines and possibly removal of their children under allegations of educational neglect," Dacus said.
Homeschooling parent Debbie Schwarzer of Los Altos said she's ready for a fight.
Schwarzer runs Oak Hill Academy out of her Santa Clara County home. It is a state-registered private school with two students, she said, noting they are her own children, ages 10 and 12. She does not have a teaching credential, but she does have a law degree.
"I'm kind of hoping some truancy officer shows up on my doorstep," she said. "I'm ready. I have damn good arguments."
The public school system will not allow Bill Gates to teach computer science, a physician to teach biology, a engineer to teach mathematics, or a published historian to teach US History because they don't have a teaching certificate from a college or university. No exceptions. A degree costs about $15,000 to obtain, most of which is wasted in classes that teach theory, child development, and classroom management. Education programs usually attract the least intelligent students, because it is so easy. However, they are not stupid since teaching is an almost guaranteed job for life with good pay. (I did obtain a Masters in Education (3.78 GPA), but am proud that I have a real undergraduate degree. While teaching I was amazed at how many public school teachers had to retake the National Teachers Exam, which is so easy I scored well above average. I also admit I don't consider myself all that intelligent partly 'cause I quit earning the big bucks to teach my own children.)
Michael Smith, president of the Home School Legal Defense Association, said the ruling would effectively ban homeschooling in the state.
"California is now on the path to being the only state to deny the vast majority of homeschooling parents their fundamental right to teach their own children at home," he said in a statement.
"They just affirmed that the current California law, which has been unchanged since the last time it was ruled on in the 1950s, is that children have to be educated in a public school, an accredited private school, or with an accredited tutor," she said. "If they want to send them to a private Christian school, they can, but they have to actually go to the school and be taught by teachers."
Heimov said her organization's chief concern was not the quality of the children's education, but their "being in a place daily where they would be observed by people who had a duty to ensure their ongoing safety." (link to article)
Yet again, these judges blatantly show that the purpose of spending billions each year to school children is not to give them an education, but to warehouse them so parents can work, to oversee them to observe neglect or abuse, and to indoctrinate them into being mindless workers and consumers.
This is the reply of Homeschool Association of California to the calls of many worried parents. In other words, "we are doing the best we can, just sit tight." (h/t to Danielle Bean)