On November 10, 1992, Home School Legal Defense Association presented oral arguments before the Michigan Supreme Court in an important challenge to the last remaining state law that requires parents to be certified teachers in order to home school their children.
HSLDA’s president, Michael Farris, argued the case for two home school families, the DeJonges and the Bennetts, who had been criminally charged for violating the truancy laws because the parents do not have teaching certificates. This is HSLDA’s oldest active case beginning when the DeJonges had truancy charges filed against them in 1985.
Farris argued that the teacher certificate requirement violates the free exercise of religion rights of home schoolers and their due process rights to oversee the education of their children. The justices asked few questions of either side. During another home school case argued just before the DeJonges’ case, the justices asked many more questions. That earlier case considered the question of whether Michigan law requires home schoolers to have an administrative hearing before they can be charged with criminal truancy.
The Michigan Supreme Court is expected to hand down a decision sometime in 1993.