Thursday, March 22, 2007

5 'Well-Educated' Kids Put in State Custody

Ruling that sent homeschooler to psych ward expanded to 2nd family

From "5 well-educated' kids put in state custody" by bob Unruh, posted 3/22/07, at

Five "well-educated" children have been ordered into state custody by a court that applied to a second family a ruling taking a 15-year-old homeschooler from her family and sending her to a psychiatric ward.

The action fulfills a dire forecast from a human rights group that the government's success in the first case would encourage officials to act against other families in Germany.

The newest ruling comes from a court in Saxony and affects five members of the Brause family, according to officials with the International Human Rights Group.
Its president, Joel Thornton, earlier had told WND that, "There is an increased fear among homeschoolers about whether their children are next," after Melissa Busekros, 15, was removed from her home and ordered first to a psychiatric ward, then a foster home, because of her "school phobia."

Thornton told WND the ruling in Saxony means that while the government officials have not yet taken the five children from the family home, they have permission to do so at any time.
"Apparently, Germany has decided that it can determine when and where the children go to school; and where they live while doing so," noted Thornton. "The youth welfare, supported by the police force, can take the children out of the home at any time with or without notice."
The decision, according to the IHRG, said the well-being of the children "can only be achieved by their attendance in the public schools."

According to a CBN report, the legal custody of Rosine, Jotham, Kurt-Simon, Lovis and Ernst Brause was taken away from parents Bert and Kathrin and given to the local youth welfare office.

The parents reportedly can regain custody of their children only by placing them in public school.

In the order, which was based solely on the parents' decision against sending their children to public school, the family also was told to pay court costs estimated at $4,000.

The judge had concluded that the children were well-educated, but accused the parents of failing to provide their children with an education in a public school. The court noted that one of the daughters expressed the same opinions as her father, showing they have not had the chance to develop "independent" personalities.

That circumstance and others echo the case involving Melissa Busekros, a case on which IHRG has been working for several weeks.

"We are gearing up to continue the fight in Germany for the right of parents to control the education of their children in accordance with their sincerely-held religious beliefs. This will be an expensive battle, and we ask you to pray about helping us fight the good fight," the IHRG said.

"Our efforts must be bathed in prayer, so we ask you to please continue praying for Melissa and the Busekros family, as well as the Brauses. No parent should have to watch their children being forcibly removed from their home because of their religious beliefs," the group said.

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