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Trip to Prague—
Day 1

Volume 4, Program 22
6/2/1998
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The modern home schooling movement has come a long way in the United States, gaining freedom and numbers throughout the past two decades. Now, the home schooling movement is starting to spread overseas, as Mike Farris reveals today on Home School Heartbeat.

    Mike:
    It felt a lot like 1982 all over again—the year my wife and I began home schooling our oldest daughter, Christy. Many of the same feelings I had when home schooling was a new movement here in America came flooding back to me when I was in Prague in the Czech Republic this March.

    I was invited to come to this former communist nation to speak to a fledgling group of parents who wanted to home school their children, but cannot because of legal restrictions. My trip also included meetings with officials to try to convince them of the wisdom of legalizing home schooling in the Czech Republic.

    My first official meeting was with the Deputy Minister of Education, Mr. Peter Roupec. His attitude was extraordinarily refreshing. And he was clearly supportive of the concept of home education.

    Although Mr. Roupec does not have the legal authority to change the law, he is empowered to authorize educational experiments. On the basis of a five-year experiment, he agreed to make home schooling legally possible for families who want to teach their children through the fifth grade.

    Senator Vizek, the chairman of the education committee, also promised to try to help home schoolers gain a permanent law after the Czech elections in June.

    This opening is a small one indeed, but for the families who want to home school and who endured many years of totalitarian communism, this is the best step for educational freedom they’ve had in a long, long time. I’m Michael Farris.

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