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The worst, most destructive piece of propaganda being spread in homeschooling circles is the statist claim that the Leeper decision is the “basis for our right to homeschool”.

Judge Murray, who wrote the Leeper decision, made no such spurious claim. He merely agreed that home education had always been considered private education in Texas.

The basis for our duty & responsibility in rearing our own children lies in the fact that… WE ARE THEIR PARENTS.

With Leeper, homeschoolers initiated a court case asking for A STATE DEFINITION OF HOMESCHOOLING as private schooling. While this was a very bad idea on their part, we can be glad that Judge Murray was inclined to uphold Texas’ constitutional law.

Please take a moment to read this oft-quoted excerpt from the Leeper decision where Judge Murray describes a private or parochial school within the meaning of the exemption section of the Texas Education Code. We have already seen that only those educational institutions SUPPORTED IN WHOLE OR IN PART BY STATE TAX FUNDS fall within the regulatory power of the Texas Education Code.

Is your home “supported in whole or in part by state tax funds”? Are you one of those schools he was describing? Have you been tricked into thinking that there would be porno some kind of “security” in calling your home a “private school” as mentioned in Leeper? Might you want to research this for yourself and rethink that position?

Please consider this: in order for the exemption section of a code to apply to you, you must be one of those to whom the code applies in the first place. The only other way to find yourself down in that exemption section is for you to voluntarily bind yourself by it.

RELATED READING: Are You the Parent or a State Babysitter? (Bev Jones, April 2001)

LEEPER GAME SCORE:

ATTORNEYS  360,000 / HOMESCHOOLERS  0

In the Leeper appeal, the court upheld the ruling that the state pay $360,000 IN ATTORNEY FEES FOR THE PLAINTIFFS.

The Leeper case, which mainly accomplished a further muddying of the waters for most folks, cost us dearly.

I don’t particularly appreciate a “carefully selected” group of statist homeschoolers deciding to make us foot the bill for an unnecessary lawsuit. Even less do I appreciate the arrogance of this group of politician, curriculum vendor, and umbrella school plaintiffs in presuming to speak for all home educators past, present, and future by filing this as a class-action lawsuit.

But these things can likely be written off to (at least some degree of) ignorance on the part of those just mentioned.

The attorneys, who should (and do) know better and go around promoting and facilitating lawsuits concerning things the state has no constitutionally enumerated power over in the first place, are reprehensible. And dangerous. And way too expensive!

Homeschooling “Defining Some Terms As Used On This Website”

Here used simply as the most common or familiar term for the type of childrearing in which parents refrain from sending their child(ren) away for an institutionalized ‘education.’

In this sense the term implies a negative: what these parents do not do.

Some individuals object to the positive implications of the term “homeschooling” since they are in no way wanting or trying to imitate an institutional school in their homes. Their preferred terms include “unschooling,” “home education,” “home-based education,” and “family-based education” among others.

The author of the HomeSchooling TEXAS website tends to agree with that objection and looks forward to a day when what we do needs no label of explanation and will be valued and recognized as simply living our own lives in the way that we choose. For now…

… there are three very simple reasons for the domain name “HomeSchooling TEXAS”:
1) “homeschooling” = “non-institutionalized education” (I use the term to imply the negative.)
2) In spite of all the different names used to describe non-institutionalized education for children,
people seeking information type the word “homeschooling” into web search engines way more
often than any other term. (I wanted people to find this website!)
3) It’s aimed at those who are practicing non-institutionalized education in… Texas. 🙂

Texas

While it is a geographical area defined by the human invention of lines drawn on a map, it’s much more than that. If you’re a Texian, you already understand. If you don’t understand, you may be in the wrong place.

Texian

A word (in Spanish, Tejano) describing the people or culture of the Texas section of the state of Coahuila y Tejas, Republic of Mexico, and the subsequent Republic of Texas.

Individual

A single human being. Not a group, organization, or any type of collective but one single person.

Liberty

“Liberty describes a social system in which free men and women live and cooperate with one another. Because their minds are free of conflict, their relationships with others tend to be peaceful and respective of one another’s autonomy.” *

Intellectual

In the realm of the mind and concerning thoughts, ideas, and beliefs.

Freedom

“Freedom is a state of mind that is not in conflict or contradiction, a mind that has integrity (i.e., is integrated into a consistent whole).” *

* I have yet to find a better definition and distinction of the concepts “freedom” and “liberty” than what is quoted here. Credit goes to Butler Shaffer, a professor at Southwestern University School of Law (and one of my favorite thinkers and writers on these topics!) and his essay: “Why Are We Afraid To Be Free?.”