Should the State Raise Your Kids?

Should the State Raise Your Kids?
June 26, 2013 12:00 ET

There is a case that has caught the attention of homeschool advocates on an international level. The Romeike family of Germany was granted asylum by a U.S. judge due to the persecution they had experienced for homeschooling their children in Germany. This persecution included police intervention well beyond simple fines or reprimands. The family believes that the school system in Germany does not teach what they as Christians believe should be taught to their children, so they wish to teach their children in an environment where their convictions are honored - their home.

Many who homeschool wish to teach their children that God is engaged in everyday life. For them, the school is an extension of the home. Schools should serve parents in the education of children. However, when state-run schools begin to serve a wholly secular agenda and deny parents the ability to train their children, they begin to do what the First Amendment says the state must never do: Establish religion.

Recently, the U.S. government has denied the Romeike's request for asylum from this type of oppression in Germany. The family has appealed and is awaiting a final decision on their status. Will America be a land of refuge or will we close our doors to those who wish to direct the upbringing of their children? Come hear legal experts talk about the implications of this case affecting not just homeschoolers but friends of religious liberty everywhere.

Michael Donnelly serves Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) as director of international affairs and as staff attorney for member affairs in the states of Colorado, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Ohio, West Virginia, Wyoming, and the District of Columbia. As director of international affairs, he coordinates HSLDA's support of homeschooling freedom all over the world. Mike is also an adjunct professor of government at Patrick Henry College where he teaches constitutional law. He received a juris doctorate from the Boston University School of Law. He is a member of the bars of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, West Virginia, the District of Columbia, and the United States Supreme Court.

Daniel Blomberg is legal counsel for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. Before joining Becket, he clerked for Chief Judge Alice M. Batchelder of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and, before that, served as litigation counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom. Daniel earned his J.D. from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 2008, graduating magna cum laude. He is a Blackstone Fellow.

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