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Attorney Helps Mom Navigate Tricky Court Hearing

by Dave Dentel • February 6, 2018

Although obeying the law usually prevents entanglements with authorities, sometimes legal trouble can’t be avoided. When families do encounter these sorts of difficulties, the best way to prevent the situation from escalating to is to employ experienced, competent counsel.

A homeschooling family in Kentucky was reminded of this truth when the local attorney for Home School Legal Defense Association helped them navigate a tricky court hearing in January.

The family had come under court supervision for one son in public school who had accrued numerous absences.

Then, for reasons unrelated to that teen’s situation, the mother withdrew another son, an 11-year-old, in October and began homeschooling him.

The status of the two boys risked becoming entangled, however, when the mother showed up at a court appointment late last year for the purpose of reviewing her older son’s public school attendance.

The judge told the mother she could not homeschool while she had a child under court supervision. He then ordered her to appear before him again in January.

That’s when she contacted HSLDA.

Addressing Concerns

Our legal team quickly developed a plan for heading off further difficulties. Our concern was that, though he lacked the legal grounds for such a decision, the judge might try to place the homeschooled son under court supervision.

At our advice, the mother prepared homeschool records to display at the January hearing.

With our local attorney at her side, the mother’s January court appearance went well. When HSLDA reminded the judge that the homeschooled son had nothing to do with the older son’s truancy case, the judge asked, “Then why are we here?”

Since the mother had withdrawn her younger son after the school year started, the judge did order her to show her evidence of homeschooling to a public school official.

As HSLDA Staff Attorney Darren Jones explained, “If you withdraw a child in the middle of the year, Kentucky’s Best Practice Document says that could be enough reason for a public school official to make sure you are keeping all the legally required paperwork to homeschool in Kentucky.”

Fortunately, the family has kept the required paperwork from the beginning of their homeschool program.

And thanks to your support of HSLDA, the family is free to continue homeschooling their son.

Dave Dentel

Web Content Manager

Dave Dentel writes and edits content for HSLDA’s website. He especially enjoys getting to interview bright, articulate homeschooled students. Read more.

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