February 10, 2016


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The Seduction of Homeschooling Families: Government Homeschooling Programs Seek to Eliminate Parents’ Choices for Their Children’s Education

Something to watch out for in New Zealand and Australia in the future:

Do the public school authorities feel threatened by homeschooling? Judging by their efforts to lure homeschooling families into dependence on local school districts, the answer is apparently yes.

For the last several years, homeschooling has been the fastest growing educational alternative in the country. Estimates of its growth rate typically range from 15 to 25 percent annually. Homeschoolers are notoriously difficult to count; however, the National Homeschooling Research Institute believes that currently 1.2 million children get their education at home. While that constitutes only about 2 percent of all school-age children, it’s more than 20 percent of those who are outside the government educational system. and, with a 20 percent annual growth rate, another quarter million children will join the homeschooling movement this year.

The sheer number of homeschoolers represents a distinct threat to the hegemony of the government school monopoly. Qualitatively, the academic success of homeschoolers, measured by standardized test scores and recruitment by colleges, debunks the myth that parents need to hire credentialed experts to force children to learn.

Homeschooling also refutes the “more money equals better education” mantra of the teachers unions. The average homeschooling family spends approximately 10 percent of the per-pupil costs associated with government schools in achieving those academic results.2 Multiplied by the number of homeschoolers, even these modest amounts add up to a sizeable market attracting numerous educational entrepreneurs.

Besides challenging the legitimacy of government schools, homeschoolers also pose a more direct economic threat. Funding for government schools is based on attendance, with a national average of almost $6,000 per student.3 Homeschooled children represent over $7 billion out of reach of local government schools, and, at its current growth rate, each year over $1 billion more slips away.

Politically, homeschoolers are a force to be reckoned with when their rights are endangered. The most highly publicized and effective example of their growing political clout occurred in 1994, when the House of Representatives inserted language into an educational appropriations bill that would have required all teachers to be credentialed. Homeschoolers perceived that provision as a threat to their autonomy and overwhelmed phone and fax lines to their representatives until the credentialing language was removed by a 424-1 vote.

Homeschooling’s economic and political impact is keenly felt by teachers unions, educational bureaucrats, ideological indoctrinators, and other beneficiaries of today’s system. What will happen when the growing number of homeschooling families withdraw their political support for the enormous taxes required to fund today’s $300 billion government system?

To combat those threats, defenders of the status quo are fighting back with all the legal, legislative, and economic weapons at their disposal. The most insidious of these tactics is the systematic undermining and co-opting of the homeschooling movement by establishing government homeschooling programs. Those programs set seductive lures before families by providing “free” resources, teachers, extracurricular activities, facilities, and even cash reimbursement.

When enough families have voluntarily returned to the government system, it will be a relatively straightforward matter to recapture the rest by imposing mandatory homeschooling oversight regulations. Will this seduction succeed in eliminating independent homeschoolers and derailing the growing free market in education? Economics and the history of private schools versus government schools provide ample lessons on what to expect.

The Birth of a Free Market in Education

The term “homeschooling” is a bit of a misnomer. To many people the word conjures up a vision of mom instructing her kids around the kitchen table–a myth perpetuated by the media, which invariably demand that particular image to illustrate their stories. The reality is far different. While instruction around the kitchen table does indeed occur in most homeschooling families, the flexibility and range of homeschooling encourages an enormous variety of alternative educational models. Those models range from child-led, interest-based learning (unschooling) to the traditional classroom model with professional teachers. They include distance learning, cooperative teaching arrangements between parents, commercial learning centers, and subject-specific tutors. Many young teenagers routinely take junior college or university courses. Others participate in the revival of apprenticing.

The homeschooling boom has not gone unnoticed by educational entrepreneurs. Homeschooling conferences attract huge numbers of vendors catering to the hundreds (and in some cases, thousands) of families attending. Traditional curriculum vendors have repackaged their wares specifically for the homeschooling market. Homeschooling magazines and newsletters flourish, increasing in number. Organizations providing paid support (curriculum counseling, bureaucratic paperwork assistance, legal support) for homeschooling families continue to spring up.

Supplementing these numerous commercial ventures and, in most cases, preceding them, are a multitude of local support groups that arose spontaneously to help meet the needs of new and existing homeschooling families. Much of the power of the homeschooling movement comes from these groups, through which families gather to meet the social and academic needs of their children. Those voluntary groups create the environment for low-cost or no-cost academic solutions, such as:

  • cooperative teaching, which leverages the existing talents and interests of parents;
  • information sharing among parents about what works and what doesn’t for different learning styles;
  • renting community rooms (or homes) for group activities and classes;
  • hiring professional teachers by the hour (for example, our science teacher is paid $75 an hour, which breaks down to $5 a child); and
  • field trips for hands-on learning.

Homeschooling support groups also provide all of the social activities found in traditional schools. One group, All Ways Learning in San Jose, is typical of the depth of activities provided by voluntary support groups once a critical mass of families is involved. The group meets twice weekly, once at a local park and once in a rented community room. Volunteer families organize the monthly newsletter, yearbook, yearly “school” pictures, monthly “PTA” meetings (aka “Parents’ Night Out”), holiday parties, dances, and choir. In addition, a homeschooling sports league in the area sponsors baseball, basketball, and soccer for several hundred homeschooled children. Homeschooling, with its varied commercial and volunteer ventures, is a microcosm of what a true free market in education could look like–parents and children working together, mixing and matching, tailoring the educational style to what works best for them; families spending their educational dollars as they choose, with educational entrepreneurs creating a wide-ranging marketplace of goods and services. It’s not just mom and the kids around the kitchen table. It’s a new educational model.

Be sure to read the rest of the article here:

https://fee.org/freeman/the-seduction-of-homeschooling-families/

 

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Needing help for your home schooling journey: http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

Red Tape Cluster Buster Meetings and the Scoping Survey: http://hef.org.nz/2014/next-steps-deadline-8-december-2014/

 

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Need help on global homeschool research

Dear Parent (or someday parent),

We invite and encourage you to participate in some very important research related to homeschooling (or home education).

The purpose of this international research initiative is to identify, understand, and compare barriers that parents face in choosing to home educate their children.

Results of this study will be used to help equip parents to make more informed decisions in the education of their children, and to propose solutions for removing barriers to homeschooling.

Get started now. [ link http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/2511422/1971b3fae031]. Click on the green arrow in the bottom right corner

Dr. Brian D. Ray is internationally known for his research on homeschooling. He is trusted by the global homeschool community and he is the investigator for this project.

All data will be confidentially analyzed. All results will be presented in an anonymous way. You will receive a free summary of the research results if you want one.

We urge you to help us with this internationally important project. Start here (Click on the green arrow in the bottom right corner. )

Sincerely,

Barbara Smith

Home Education Foundation

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Needing help for your home schooling journey: http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

Red Tape Cluster Buster Meetings and the Scoping Survey: http://hef.org.nz/2014/next-steps-deadline-8-december-2014/

 

Please like & share:

HOMESCHOOL BOY IN GOVERNMENT CUSTODY 7 YEARS: Parents fight officials in ‘last hope’ to see own son

Update 30 November from Ruby and Christer:

From  Ruby Harrold-Claesson:

We have already sent three (3) applications/complaints to the European Court of Human Rights:
1 – the violation of their freedom of movement and violation of their right to private and family life;
2 – the violation of their right to a fair trial, i e the right to choose their own lawyer and
3 – the transfer of guardianship, i e the violation of their right to private and family life.
All have been declared inadmissible.

 From Christer:

On top of the Swedish page about human rights I read the following,

Human rights are universal and apply to everyone. They state that all people, regardless of country, culture and context, are born free and equal in dignity and rights.

- – - – - – wow, sounds good doesn’t it.

We have no funds to work with anymore, so there is little we can do from here. I kept the pressure for a year on 750UDS per month, went below 120 pounds because of that. So it’s fight or eat.

They know exactly what they are doing, this is what they want, and they smile about it for sure…

Have tried pretty much everything when it comes to fighting and getting a job etc. So the question is what to do from here. Fight and die, or just live.

The actual image of Sweden should be clear now though. The country in it self, the nature and all animals is beauty, but that’s about it.

Have no clue what to do from here, neither do we have any tools to work with.

http://www.manskligarattigheter.se/en

 

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When Domenic Johansson was seven years old, he and his parents, Christer and Annie, were moving from their home in Sweden to his mother’s native India. They actually were seated aboard the jet waiting to take off.

Then Swedish police, dispatched by social workers infuriated over the family’s homeschooling, boarded the airliner, took Domenic by force and put him in the custody of the nation’s social services agency.

He’s been there since.

And he hasn’t even seen his parents since 2010, after social workers torpedoed what had been sporadic and supervised times together.

Now that nation’s Supreme Court is being asked to review what has been described as a “vicious” attack on the family, and supporters of the Johanssons say the rest of the world can chime in.

Officials with the Home School Legal Defense Association have confirmed that a lawyer working with the Johanssons is filing an appeal with the Swedish Supreme Court, aided by both the HSLDA and the international Alliance Defending Freedom.

They say those who are interested in justice in the case can contribute by sending a message to the court regarding case O-4373-15 with the request that the judges grant the family’s appeal.

Contact information for the court and other details have been posted online by the HSLDA.

The organization suggests that people point out to the court that “The United Nations Declaration on Human Rights recognizes the family as the fundamental group unit of society and entitled to protection of (and from) the state.”

“Now we are asking for your help in what may be their last hope and appeal to ever be reunited with their son,” HSLDA said in a new report on the situation.

See what American education has become, in “Crimes of the Educators: How Utopians Are Using Government Schools to Destroy America’s Children.”

HSLDA outlined the history of the case: Social workers enraged by homeschooling, which was legal in Sweden at the time, used police to abduct the little boy, and then added claims of issues with his vaccinations and teeth to the complaint. Then social workers, aided by the local courts, simply kept Domenic.

“Imagine – living just miles from your child but being prevented by government authorities from seeing him at all – for years,” HSLDA said. “This is the tragic story of the Johansson family, who were homeschooling in Sweden when they decided to move to India, Annie Johansson’s home country. The three of them were seated on a jetliner in June 2009 when, moments before takeoff, police and social workers boarded the plane and seized Domenic.”

The HSLDA said the initial explanation was the family’s homeschooling.

“Later they [officials] said the parents had neglected Domenic by failing to keep his vaccinations up to date and to have cavities in his teeth,” HSLDA said.

After years of court fights, in December 2012, the courts transferred the custody rights for Domenic to the state, and the European Court of Human Rights has rejected appeals submitted to its officials.

Domenic’s parents now have left the “tenuous thread of hope” with a petition filed by Ruby Harrold-Claesson, a human rights attorney and chief of the Nordic Committee for Human Rights.

Her appeal is to the Swedish Supreme Court.

“This is a tragic case. Unfortunately, it’s not the only one I’ve dealt with in Sweden, but it is very tragic,” she told HSLDA. “Our previous victory in a lower court was so diametrically opposed to the appeals court’s ruling that this appeal should be heard. The Swedish court culture is vicious to families who are caught in it. I’m doing all I can for this family, but it is very difficult.”

“The Johansson case represents every parent’s worst nightmare,” said Mike Donnelly, the head of HSLDA’s global outreach. “Domenic should have been returned to his parents years ago, but the Swedish social services machine is pitiless and unrelenting. I can’t even imagine the pain and suffering this family has endured. HSLDA and our allies at ADF are committed to helping this family, but the outcome is doubtful absent a miracle.

Domenic and Annie Johansson

Domenic and Annie Johansson

“Even if we win, the damage done to this family by the Swedish state is unimaginable. We need our friends to pray and show solidarity with the Johanssons as we try to get the attention of the Swedish court,” he said.

A recent ruling from the international human rights body said, “The applicants had failed in their care of [Domenic], both physical and psychological.”

It claimed Domenic “had not been allowed to go to school” and was “isolated.”

But WND reported legal experts argue Swedish officials violated multiple human rights enshrined in international treaties to which the Swedish government is a party: the right of parents to direct the education of their children, family life, due process, travel and more.

“The seizure of the child without a valid court order, from a plane he was lawfully entitled to be on, the detention by the state in foster care with virtually zero contact with his family and finally the termination of parental rights is a clear violation of international human rights standards,” HSLDA founder and Chairman Michael Farris, who holds a master of law degree in public international law from the University of London, said earlier.

Swedish officials several times have declined to respond to WND questions.

When the family tried to leave Sweden in 2009 for India, the mother’s homeland, armed police stormed the plane and abducted young Domenic without a warrant or court order.

Numerous experts and attorneys have described the incident as a brazen example of “state-napping.”

When one court decision was released in Sweden in favor of the parents, government officials simply kept Domenic in custody until they were able to get it reversed.

Legal experts from around the world have told WND that the pretexts cited to seize Domenic do not stand up to scrutiny, especially because homeschooling was legal in Sweden at the time, and the right to homeschool is guaranteed under multiple human rights treaties.

“No legitimate justification has ever been produced to defend the seizure or the ongoing custody of the boy,” HSLDA said.

As WND has been reporting for years, the Johansson family is hardly alone in battling Swedish authorities for the right to homeschool.

Dozens of families have already fled abroad, including Jonas Himmelstrand, the chief of the Swedish Homeschooling Association, ROHUS, who fled to Finland with his wife and children.

See what American education has become, in “Crimes of the Educators: How Utopians Are Using Government Schools to Destroy America’s Children.”


Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/11/homeschool-boy-in-govt-custody-for-7-years/#rPJRePLfod9Ef4Au.99

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Please share/forward this link with other home educators.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Needing help for your home schooling journey:http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

Red Tape Cluster Buster Meetings and the Scoping Survey: http://hef.org.nz/2014/next-steps-deadline-8-december-2014/

 

Please like & share:

Home Education in Japan

Please pray for the home educators in Japan. Craig and I have some very good friends in Japan. Craig was the key note speaker to home educators in either 2002 or 2003.

Israel Wayne spoke at homeschooling conventions there in 2009, and will be returning in 2016, so he feels a strong bond with the homeschooling community there also.

“They have never had homeschooling laws (just Compulsory Attendance laws), but now, their legislature is seeking to enact regulations on homeschoolers that Mike Smith of HSLDA says will be some of the most restrictive anywhere in the world (mandatory home visits and much more). They were going to act quickly, but things got held up as CHEA Japan (the national Christian homeschool association there) has been working tirelessly to try to persuade legislators to reconsider.

Please pray that God would change hearts and minds and that the homeschool community there would be allowed to teach their children freely and legally with no hindrance. We’ve seen miracles here in the U.S. in the past regarding homeschooling freedoms, so let’s believe God to intervene on their behalf in Japan as well.” Israel Wayne

You can learn more about the work in Japan here:

 

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https://hslda.org/hs/international/Japan/default.asp

Swedish Family Homeschools in Japan
August 31, 2015: This new system is referred to as the “Konin” system, or translated, “Certificate for Students Achieving the Proficiency Level of Upper Secondary School Graduates.” It no longer stipulates that students must have graduated from a traditional school or have taken the national examination.

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Please share/forward this link with other home educators.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Needing help for your home schooling journey:http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

Red Tape Cluster Buster Meetings and the Scoping Survey: http://hef.org.nz/2014/next-steps-deadline-8-december-2014/

Please like & share:

Battle Escalates over Homeschooled Child Seized by Swedish Govt

From: https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/battle-escalates-over-homeschooled-child-seized-by-swedish-govt

Domenic Johansson has been separated from his family for years.

 

STRASBOURG, France, June 28, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) — Attorneys with the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) and the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) filed an application with the European Court of Human Rights Friday asking it to hear the case of a 7-year-old boy seized by Swedish authorities because his parents homeschool.

“Parents have the right and authority to make decisions regarding their children’s education without government interference,” said ADF Legal Counsel Roger Kiska, who is based in Europe. “A government trying to create a cookie-cutter child in its own image should not be allowed to violate this basic and fundamental human right.”

“The refusal of Swedish authorities to respect that right has left us no choice but to take this case to the European Court of Human Rights.”

Swedish authorities forcibly removed Dominic Johansson from his parents, Christer and Annie Johansson, in June 2009 after the family had boarded a plane to move to Annie’s home country of India. The officials did not have a warrant nor have they charged the Johanssons with any crime. The officials, say ADF lawyers, seized the child because they believe homeschooling is inappropriate and insist the government should raise Dominic instead.

Social services authorities have placed Dominic in foster care and a government school. Christer and Annie are only allowed to visit their son for one hour every five weeks.

“We are gravely concerned about this case as it represents what can happen to other home-schooling families,” explained HSLDA lawyer Mike Donnelly, one of nearly 1700 attorneys in the ADF alliance. “In response to our inquiries, Swedish authorities have cited the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child to explain and defend their actions. If the U.S. were to ever ratify this treaty, as the White House and some members of Congress have expressed a desire to do, then this sort of thing could occur here.”

ADF and HSLDA attorneys decided to file Johansson v. Sweden with the ECHR when the Supreme Administrative Court of Sweden refused to review a lower court’s December 2009 ruling in Johansson v. Gotland Social Services that found that the government was within its rights to seize the child.

The lower court cited the fact that Dominic had not been vaccinated as a reason to remove him permanently from his parents and also repeated the charges that homeschoolers do not perform well academically and are not well socialized. HSLDA and ADF said that these latter charges are “probably false.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Please share/forward this link with other home educators.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Needing help for your home schooling journey:http://hef.org.nz/2011/needing-help-for-your-home-schooling-journey-2/

And

Here are a couple of links to get you started home schooling:

Information on getting startedhttp://hef.org.nz/getting-started-2/

and

Information on getting an exemptionhttp://hef.org.nz/exemptions/

This link is motivational: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-what-is-it-all-about/

Exemption Form online: http://hef.org.nz/2012/home-schooling-exemption-form-now-online/

Coming Events: http://hef.org.nz/2013/some-coming-events-for-home-education-during-2013-2/

Beneficiaries: http://hef.org.nz/2013/where-to-for-beneficiary-families-now-that-the-social-security-benefit-categories-and-work-focus-amendment-bill-has-passed-its-third-reading

Red Tape Cluster Buster Meetings and the Scoping Survey: http://hef.org.nz/2014/next-steps-deadline-8-december-2014/

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