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April 20, 2015

Families Satisfied With No Homeschool Law

By Timothy Brennan

This past weekend a Brazilian attorney gave lectures here at Canaan Bible Camp, in the state of Rio Grande do Sul. This Brazilian state is bordered by Argentina on the west and Uruguay on the south. He showed how the current international legal framework and national constitution—signed by the Brazilian government and endorsed of the majority of the people—give a large margin for parents to choose to educate their children at home. These constitutional laws protect the ability of parents to educate, train, and teach their children.

He also mentioned that, from what he knows, there are around 2,000 families that are currently homeschooling their children here in Brazil.

It may be interesting to note that at the end of 2014, a Brazilian congressman wanted the Federal Senate to pass a constitutional amendment to give any Brazilian citizen the right to educate their children at home. Our attorney contact looked at the congressman's petition, and kindly encouraged him not to pursue this course of action at this time.

Why? Because then there would be all kinds of interest groups who would try to get in on the action. For example, the national teachers union, the psychologists union, rights groups for various segments of society, and others would jump in to add their ideas to a homeschool bill. While it is encouraging that there are approximately 2,000 homeschooling families, it is unlikely that the homeschool lobby would have enough political influence to sway the opinions or proposals of these other public interest groups. These groups may be more effective in pushing their ideas through the legislative process, so a homeschooling bill would be substantially changed and may not result in the freedom we desire.  So the effort to have homeschooling officially legalized as a constitutional right will wait until an appropriate time, when the homeschooling community in Brazil is better prepared in number and knowledge for this right to become a law.

Thankfully, a Brazilian attorney said that typically if a law to regulate a particular activity does not exist, then the government does not get involved or cause a ruckus in that area. This explains the current climate for homeschooling in Brazil.  Although undefined in Brazilian legislation, families are increasingly able to homeschool with fewer and fewer difficulties.

Many Brazilian families came to attend the recent lectures by a Brazilian attorney. Gathering together encouraged families and solidified their desire to seek to educate their children at home.

A homeschooling father and now grandfather, Timothy Brennan, lives in Brazil and was homeschooled himself by his missionary parents.

 More Information

Learn more by visiting HSLDA’s Brazil page.