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July 30, 2003
Mrs. W. v. Community Services Agency
HSLDA defends family threatened with reduction of services

Filed: March 20, 2003, Humboldt County

Nature of Case: Ms. W. is homeschooling her 16-year old son in California. She has filed an affidavit establishing a private school as required by law. The Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services reduced her welfare cash aid because her son is enrolled in a home school private school, and they did not consider him to be enrolled in school, a requirement for continued receipt of cash aid. Humboldt County had contacted the California Department of Education, which at that time was giving out its erroneous interpretation that a parent who was not a certified teacher could not establish a private school. Since the time that this case arose, the California Department of Education has removed its statement that parents could not establish a private school from its website. HSLDA advised the County of the change, but the County initially refused to drop the case.

Status: On the day that HSLDA Litigation Attorney James R. Mason, III, was scheduled to fly out to represent Ms. W at a hearing, the Department of Health and Human Services' lawyer called him. She told him that the witnesses from the school district refused to testify at the hearing, and so the Department was withdrawing their objection. Ms. W's benefits were completely restored, allowing her to continue homeschooling.

Last Updated: July 30, 2003.