If public schools treat parental rights with little respect, should homeschoolers be surprised when their own rights are threatened? Hosts Mike Smith and Michael Farris discuss the ramifications of a public school case, today on Home School Heartbeat.
Earlier in the week, we referenced last year’s Ninth Circuit decision in Fields v. Palmdale and how that got a lot of people’s attention. But a lesser known case decided by the First Circuit in 1995, was precedent-setting for last year’s Ninth Circuit court decision. Mike, would you explain?
Mike, I don’t even like to say the name of the case on the air—but it was called Brown v. Hot, Sexy and Safer Productions. And it was ruled in 1995 by the First Circuit that even though the school assembly was mandatory, it was offensive, and suggestive sexual material was involved, that parents did not have a right to opt their children out of such programs. They held that parents have a right to choose education, but once they choose to drop their kids off at the public schoolhouse door, their right to control what goes on in their child’s education is over. And so, it’s a sober warning for all parents to realize that the government has taken the position that once they get your child inside the schoolhouse door, they can teach them just about anything.
Now how did the Brown decision affect the Palmdale case?
Well, even though the facts were a little less offensive in the Palmdale case, the Ninth Circuit relied on the First Circuit’s general principle: once you drop the child at the public schoolhouse door, your rights are over. And so we have two key circuits in the federal courts holding that parents really don’t have any rights if their children attend the public schools.
Listeners, join us next time. Until then, I’m Mike Smith.