Valley Home-School Teachers Upset Over New Court Ruling - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

Valley Home-School Teachers Upset Over New Court Ruling

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By: Norma Yuriar & Charlene Lee

Home schooling parents in the Valley are reacting to a recent court decision outlawing the practice.

A state appellate court has ruled that home-schooling is illegal in California, unless one of the parents is a certified teacher.

Thousands of Valley children learning their ABC's are doing it from home.

"It's viable for us to do it, so why not? We can give them such a good breath of information, things that they would never get in a school situation," said Karri Lewis, a home-school mom.

But that may soon change.

"That's very concerning, because that will take away a right that should be left to the parents," said Mike Goosen from Christian Home Educators of Fresno Area.

An appeals court ruling requires California parents to have teaching credentials in order to educate their children at home.

The second appellate court says: "Parents that fail to comply with school enrollment laws may be subject to a criminal complaint."

"My reaction to the decision is more of a parental right issue, as opposed to an education issue," said Goosen.

Mike Goosen and his wife Tami have spent more than a decade in the Valley, home-schooling their three kids.

"Part of our decision is our belief that it's our God given right and requirement to teach our kids," said Goosen.

Goosen is also the head of Christian Home Educators of the Fresno Area, or CHEFA.

The organization represents more than 250 families who take their kids education into their own hands.

But those who support the ruling believe the state needs to monitor the quality of education parents are providing.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger sees it differently.

He says if the California Supreme Court does not reverse the controversial decision, he will support legislation protecting a parent's right to educate their kids.

"I'm hoping that will be the outcome of all of this," said Goosen.

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