PJI Puts Local Authorities on Notice of Homeschool Ruling

Sacramento, CA – In the wake of last week’s landmark ruling by the California Court of Appeal upholding parents’ rights to educate their children at home, Pacific Justice Institute is taking steps to ensure local authorities are aware of the decision and are warned against overzealous prosecution of homeschoolers. Prior to the court’s clear declaration of the right to homeschool, many law-abiding families in California have been subjected to investigation and even prosecution because of their non-traditional approach to education.

PJI was closely involved in last week’s landmark Rachel L. decision and has defended parental rights in the educational context throughout its history. Just two weeks ago, PJI affiliate attorney Vip Bhola successfully defended a homeschooling family in Santa Monica against misdemeanor charges of a daytime curfew violation. Earlier this year, school authorities near Santa Rosa rescinded demands for detailed information about a single mother’s homeschool program after PJI became involved.

PJI Chief Counsel Kevin Snider, who participated in oral arguments at the Court of Appeal defending the right to homeschool, is sending a letter to the County Counsel in each of California’s fifty-eight counties, along with a copy of the court decision, warning against misuse of truancy, curfew and child welfare laws against law-abiding homeschoolers.

PJI President Brad Dacus commented, “We want to ensure that the landmark victory which has been achieved for homeschoolers at the Court of Appeal is respected and implemented on the local level. We will remain vigilant and continue to represent any private schools and families whose rights are not being fully appreciated by school or county authorities.” PJI Chief Counsel Kevin Snider added, “We commend the Court of Appeal for its diligence in reviewing this case and issuing a thorough, thoughtful opinion which upholds parental rights.”