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July 9, 2007

Prosecutor Wants Homeschool Family to Register Every Year

“It has been reported to me that your children are not attending school.” This is how Barber County Attorney Richard Raleigh started his letter to the Mike Adams (name changed to protect family’s privacy) family of Medicine Lodge, Kansas.

Mr. Raleigh then proceeded to tell them the Community Corrections office said that the family had not “registered as a home school.” He noted that they had registered in the past, but wondered if they had forgotten to register this year. He wanted them to “take care of the matter,” i.e., register again or provide some explanation for not doing so.

The Mike Adams family is a member of Home School Legal Defense Association, so they knew help was near.

The family called HSLDA for guidance. HSLDA attorney Scott A. Woodruff wrote a letter to the county attorney. He explained that the family had registered as a private school 13 years ago and had kept their address up-to-date on their filing. He told Mr. Raleigh that private school filings do not “expire,” so there is no need to file every year. Finally, he gave Mr. Raleigh the name and phone number of the Kansas Department of Education employee who could confirm the family’s filing.

Months have passed with no further communication from Mr. Raleigh’s office. Although the family might have appreciated a letter acknowledging that they are in full compliance with Kansas law, the county attorney’s silence says virtually the same thing.