November 1, 2005

Unreasonable School District Files Criminal Charges Against a Homeschool Family

The Cole family started homeschooling in October 2004 because they learned about the benefits of a home education. Also, their children were failing academically in the public school. In addition, the school kept giving one child double medication without the parent’s permission, which led to even greater difficulties.

Homeschooling proved to be a success because in just a few months the younger child went from third grade to fourth grade work. The parents were thrilled.

The family continued to homeschool throughout the 2004-05 school year, but on June 13, 2005, a petition was filed against them, which ordered the parents to cooperate in a child abuse investigation. The order was signed by a judge who gave the social worker the right to make “prompt and thorough investigation” of child abuse and neglect allegedly committed by the family. The court wanted a complete investigation of the family, including medical and psychiatric examinations of the children as “deemed necessary,” invasion of their home, and interviews with the children.

Chris Klicka talked with the prosecutor, who refused to drop the case, even though the only allegations were in regards to the education of their children.

Texas HSLDA attorney Tom Sanders continued to handle the case and via much painstaking negotiation was able to obtain a dismissal from the prosecutor. Thankfully, the Cole family did not miss a day of homeschooling and the children continue to thrive in the home environment.