White House Response to Romeike Petition – Words, Not Action

As reported here, a White House petition supporting the Romeike family asylum request reached a response threshold several months ago.

The White House has responded.

OFFICIAL WHITE HOUSE RESPONSE TO Immediate Action Requested for Romeikes—Grant Permanent Legal Status to Persecuted German Homeschool Family

What We Have to Say About the Romeikes Family and Homeschooling
The We the People Terms of Participation explain that “the White House may decline to address certain procurement, law enforcement, adjudicatory, or similar matters properly within the jurisdiction of federal departments or agencies, federal courts, or state and local government.” To the extent that these petitions request a particular law enforcement or adjudicatory action, or address a matter before the courts, we cannot issue a comment.

But while we can’t comment on this particular issue, we know that homeschooling is a popular option for many parents pursuing high academic standards for their children. Homeschooling can provide young people with the resources and attention they need to succeed academically, and we understand why their parents value this freedom.

Thank you for your petition and your participation in We the People.

We can wish all we want the Obama administration is pro-homeschooling. But the above response only seemed to acknowledge many parents choose homeschooling.  The verbiage does not even recognize the many homeschooling successes here in the US.

The Obama administration’s Secretary of Education – Arne Duncan, signed off on oppressive, over-compliant Chicago homeschooling demands in 2005. At the time, he was the Chicago Public School (CPS) system’s CEO.  The policy is still in place on the CPS website, despite the 2010 call to stop these demands on families fleeing the Chicago schools.  The CEO – Flavia Hernandez - stated in her response to homeschool advocates that “we have modified our website to acknowledge that the forms linked to the website are not mandatory”.  This is what the website says today. (No link provided, so this inaccurate information doesn’t get hits):

Overview

Parents or guardians have the option of homeschooling their children. The Chicago Public Schools (CPS) request that parents or guardians who choose to homeschool their children provide the following documents (refer to Resources section below for documents and supporting information):
CPS Statement of Assurance Form
A letter to CPS which describes the manner in which you will be instructing your child at home
A copy of the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) Home Schooling Registration Form that is mailed to ISBE

Please fax or mail the 3 document listed above to:

Attn: Michele Appleton
Chief Instruction Office
Department of Policy and Procedures
125 S. Clark St., 5th Floor
Chicago, Illinois 60603
(773) 553-3733 (phone)
(773) 553-2151 (fax)

In addition, only the ISBE Home Schooling Registration Form should be mailed to:

Illinois State Board of Education
100 N. First St.
S-284
Springfield, Illinois 62777-0001

These three documents should be filed annually for each child.

Illinois homeschoolers, even in Chicago, do not need to annually register, file a Statement of Assurance, nor describe the “manner” of home instruction.

Actions tend to speak louder than words in the politics of this day and age.


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