- Joseph Ellis
Bullied by 'The System'
Bullied by a District Attorney? Yep. And here’s What You Need to Know About It
A family in Western Oklahoma was intimidated and threatened by a District Attorney and their local school district for withdrawing their son from public school to home education. It is one more reason that all home educators in Oklahoma need to know what’s going on and to be aware of our rights.
A family recently withdrew their son from a rural public school district in Western Oklahoma. The trouble began when the schools demanded the family fill out their own withdrawal form. Their form included the following language:
I also understand we must provide ****** Schools with proof of some type of continuing education, such as records request, homeschool curriculum, or enrollment verification in online school.
The above-mentioned student will not loiter in the vicinity of the school nor be in the company of students who are enrolled in school during the school day. Trespassing on school property will be grounds for prosecution.
If you are not aware that the above statement is illegal, you need to be. In Oklahoma, we are not required to submit records or share information about curriculum choices with our local school district. We are constitutionally guaranteed the right to educate our children by other means, which means to educate them at home without the help of an online public school.
The problems did not end there for this family. They were called to a meeting with the school district to discuss the issue. They thought the meeting would be at the school, but it was moved to the courthouse. The district attorney was there along with representatives from other area school districts. The district attorney threatened the family with prosecution for truancy. The school principal stepped in to tell them that this will all go away if they simply provide the name of the accredited online school that their son is enrolling in.
The Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is already aware of this and will be working to get this illegal practice stopped in this district. It is not, however, a completely isolated incident. We encountered a similar situation a few years ago in Eastern Oklahoma. We here at Constitutional Home Educators Alliance are monitoring this situation and are in contact with HSLDA to see what type of involvement may be called for. However, here are some takeaways for every single home educator in Oklahoma:
If you are home educating and are not a member of HSLDA, join HSLDA. You can use CHEA’s group discount code to get a $20 discount off of your annual membership. Our HSLDA group number is 210510.
You need to know the law in Oklahoma and what your rights are, so that you cannot be bullied this way, and that you will know how to advise prospective homeschoolers that seek your advice.
Stay diligent and engaged. Our freedoms cannot be taken for granted. We must work to preserve them or risk losing them.
Want to get involved further in protecting home education freedom in Oklahoma? Join us as an Ally at our Legislative Impact Day.
What do you think about what’s going on in Western Oklahoma? Let us know in the comments below.
JOIN US for our second annual Legislative Impact Day on March 6th!