April 5, 2011

Certified Teacher to be Investigated

A family in Bakersfield had finally reached the breaking point with the public school and decided to withdraw their child. Thinking it was going to be an easy process, because everyone knows homeschooling is legal, the mother went to the school office to fill out the proper paperwork to withdraw.

The mother was advised that her child would not be dropped from the school rolls until the attendance officer had completed an investigation as to whether or not she was qualified to homeschool. As a new member, the mother called HSLDA’s Legal Department. We advised her that the public school had no authority to conduct such an investigation and guided her through drafting a withdrawal letter and filing her private school affidavit.

When the mother shared with us that she was a California certified teacher, we said “Maybe the attendance officer didn’t know you were a teacher” (not that it would have been appropriate to investigate any parent, teacher or not). Mom said, “Oh no, I was wearing my teacher ID.”

This is the establishment that is educating the future generation. If it had worked for this family, they would have completed the school year.

Bakersfield got it wrong. The only authority the public school has over private schools/homeschools is to verify that a particular child is enrolled in school somewhere or is being tutored by a certified teacher. They have no authority to investigate the competence of private school teachers, or approve or disapprove any private school or course.

If you ever are approached by an attendance officer requesting information beyond your private school affidavit or private school satellite program, get their contact information or business card and contact HSLDA immediately.