Friday, March 16, 2012

Little Juvenile Delinquents in Kansas City, MO (Guest Post)

/Since I messed you over the last 2 days with no pictures on the blog (by the way, I can see the pictures just find when I go to the site apparently I can see dead people, too?), here's a bonus post from Happy Elf Mom over at Homeschool and Etc. about a pressing issue that needs your opinion, help, attention, etc.

Less than two weeks from now there will be a vote on this proposal.  Any school-age child can be interrogated at the park or shopping center or... oh, just anywhere in Kansas City including the sidewalk in front of your house.  No crime needs to be committed for the cops to put YOUR kid into the paddywagon and bring him in downtown.  The officer simply needs to suspect that your child is truant.

First off, "compulsory education" is an oxymoron, but leaving that aside for the moment, there are about a dozen and one problems with this proposal.  I live about three blocks from Kansas City and parts of Kansas City are part of our school district.  Stay with me, now...

Today, my public-schoolers don't have school.  (It's Professional Development day, which means teachers are doing their dopey workshops and celebrating diversity and stuff.)  Kansas City School District (KCSD) schools are in session.  Were the law in effect today, my teens could be accosted for going to the park about a mile away from my house.

Guess what?  We also have spring break during an ENTIRELY DIFFERENT WEEK than KCSD.  And sometimes we call snow days and they don't.  Add to that the fact that our district has ten elementaries, bunches of middle schools and high schools that all have DIFFERENT start and end times and you can see where an officer might be confused as to what time "school" is really in session when he's thinking of picking up some random kid.

And I don't think my district is the only KC-area district with a few differences in attendance dates and hours than KCSD.  Nevermind that KCSD faces *immediate takeover* by DESE (Department of Elementary and Secondary Education) and DESE may decide to divvy up the district piecemeal to five *different districts* in the very near future.  Five different districts which may have different start and end times even within their borders.  Five different districts that have long weekends at different times.  (I'm counting about six in our district alone this year that are probably different from KCSD.)

I'm thinking cops have other things to do than carry ten different district schedules, and also worry about whether they're going to pick up the wrong kid sometime whose parents will start a stink in the media.  I haven't even gotten to this idea of homeschoolers being left alone just yet in my post, and I've been rambling for a while now.

HSLDA is currently collecting stories from homeschoolers who have been harassed or bothered in some way during the "school" day because of homeschooling.  They're encouraging members and other concerned people to and promise to keep stories confidential unless specific permission is given to use publicly.

Sometimes it isn't even about homeschoolers.  Sometimes it's about American citizens of all ages having reasonable rights.  I wrote HSLDA and told them that as of right now, I've *never* been harassed by police or school officials for homeschooling.  And I'd like to keep it that way.

Bloggy fans, weigh in in the comments section, please!