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June 21, 2013

The Sumner County Grinch Wants to Steal Homeschool Freedom


Staff Attorney Darren Jones is a member of HSLDA’s litigation team, which helps homeschool families who are facing legal challenges. He and his wife homeschool.
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A Sumner County family pulled their child out of public school, telling officials they were going to homeschool him. Soon they received a rather frightening letter from a Sumner County Community Corrections representative saying she might ask the county attorney to file a lawsuit against the family.

The representative asked the family to fill out a five-page questionnaire with 19 questions. It ended with a statement that the parents acknowledge they could go to jail!

The entire lengthy questionnaire could be summed up in one simple statement: the government decides who can homeschool, not the parents. This is what all homeschoolers might face in Kansas but for the fact that Christian Home Educators Confederation of Kansas, HSLDA, Midwest Parent Educators, and the Teaching Parent Association are hard at work day and night to prevent grinches like Sumner County from stealing your homeschool freedom.

Invasive Inquiry

Here is a sampling of the questions:

  • List the high school and college every person instructing the child attended and dates they attended;
  • List the hours of instruction for the child for every day of the week;
  • List the child’s subjects and include lesson plans;
  • List the name of your curriculum and include a copy of the child's grades and evaluations for the last 90 days;
  • And list any “special needs” of the child.

What’s wrong with Sumner County, anyway? It’s the only county in Kansas that gives homeschool families shabby treatment like this. Don’t they know the Kansas Legislature recently granted homeschoolers by-right admission to the best state colleges and universities?

HSLDA attorney Darren Jones sent a respectful, analytically correct, plainly worded letter to the representative explaining the applicable law and informing her that she should not expect the family to return the five-page questionnaire. The family heard nothing further.

HSLDA will continue to protect families from Sumner County’s oppressive tactics until they wake up and respect homeschool families the way virtually every other county does.

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Protect Your Family

If you or someone you know is not a member of HSLDA, will you consider taking a moment today to join or recommend us? Your support enables us to defend individual families threatened by government officials and protect homeschooling freedom for all. Join now >>