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June 6, 2012

Victory: University Accepts Documents from Homeschool Grad

A homeschool graduate in Poland has received news that he will finally be able to complete his university studies, thanks to the assistance of HSLDA.

“After five years of fighting against irrational legal demands, my son is able to finish his college studies,” reports Marek Budajczak, homeschool pioneer and father. “With HSLDA’s help, we were able to obtain American educational documents for my son Pawel, and these documents were supported by the American Consul in Cracow and accepted by the Polish Regional School Authority—something our family had been waiting for for years.”

Pawel Budajczak graduated from high school over five years ago, but due to complications from local Polish officials, he was prevented from officially entering university or completing his tertiary studies. Pawel is one of his country’s first homeschool graduates. Although he passed the SAT exam in 2007 with an above average score, the Polish Regional School Authority and the Polish Ministry of National Education refused to accept his test results. Pawel and his family looked for a way to have his documentation accepted, but no solution was found until Mike Donnelly, HSLDA’s director of international affairs, contacted Tennessee-based umbrella school Home Life Academy.

“Home Life Academy was able to present the Budajczaks with a high school diploma and transcripts with an official Hague Convention Apostille,” notes Donnelly.

With this certification, Polish authorities accepted Pawel’s high school coursework and exam scores as legitimate. The 25-year-old may now complete his university studies and embark upon his chosen career path.

“I must emphasize the fact that without HSLDA’s help, and especially your personal engagement, and the help of your friends—Sandra Lovelace of Lifework Forum, Mr. David Parkerson and his team at Home Life Academy—this victory wouldn’t have happened,” says Marek. “I should add: No Polish individuals helped us in the matter, only American friends! How could I express my gratitude!”

Marek is president of Stowarzyszenie Edukacji Domowej, one of two Polish associations for home education.

“We have taught our three children at home since 1995,” says Marek. “Although homeschooling in Poland is a relatively new phenomenon (starting in the mid-1990s), we have reached the point where our first children have finished their secondary education and are now entering college. This is a tremendous victory for Polish homeschoolers.”

This victory will also allow Pawel’s sister Emilia to begin her linguistic and art history studies at the university.

Donnelly notes that as homeschooling continues to grow in countries around the world, homeschool families need our support.

“It is our privilege at HSLDA to be able to help brave pioneers like the Budajczaks who are cutting a path for hopefully many others to follow in home education! We are delighted to have played a part in helping this family achieve their goals for their children.”

 Other Resources

“First Homeschool Graduates in Poland”