by Amy Tjaden
Homeschool.com News Editor
There is a bit of concerning news coming out of Kentucky. The Director of Pupil Personnel for the Marshall County School System has declared that she plans to investigate all homeschool programs within her jurisdiction. This includes making random home visits.
Ledonia Williamson claims she will visit all 121 homeschool families within her district. She also plans to make periodic phone calls to check in on the families. She has also asked the community to keep an eye out and report any child they see outside playing during school hours.
Under Kentucky law, parents have the right to educate their children how they see fit. They also have a right to privacy. Kentucky law requires those parents that homeschool to maintain attendance records and Scholarship reports. According to HSLDA, those records are not required to be submitted unless certain circumstances arise.
There is nothing under Kentucky law stating that parents must open their homes for investigation. However, according to this article in the Marshall County Tribune Courier, Williamson says she does have the right, as all private schools are to be open to inspection.
The article quotes two different homeschool laws. I’m not an expert, far from it. However, I feel that the laws are either being misinterpreted or Williamson is playing with the wording to work it to her agenda.
The article is a follow-up to an earlier article. In this second article, Williamson does a tiny back pedal saying her point was “lost in translation”. She claims she is not on a witch- hunt. I find that I don’t believe her, especially when she is making a connection between homeschoolers and drug use. Apparently, there is fear that some families are using drugs and not actually homeschooling.
There is a big difference between homeschooling and simply not sending your children to school. I guess Williamson cannot differentiate and so all homeschooling families are being scrutinized. I think Williamson needs to understand homeschooling before she starts “investigating” homeschooling families.
A child playing at the park during the middle of the afternoon does not mean the parents aren’t schooling him or that they’re doing drugs. As one parent stated, “We take field trips just like they do in public school,” Carolyn said. “That may look like the kids are just playing to someone else. How would they know?”
If you live in Marshall County Kentucky, be prepared.
Copyright 2009 Homeschool.com