Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Truancy issue squashed with Parent-School Compact

When our daughter was 10 years old, the truant officer arrived at our home. To make a long story short, we were 'squealed on' by the state's home-study coordinator (also a homeschool mom) who was jealous of the attention we were receiving from the media and organizations inviting us for speaking engagements. She felt, as Home-Study Coordinator, it was her job to speak for homeschooling in Vermont, not us. Along with the principal of our local school and its superintendent, she knew were were not enrolled in the state's home-study program. After that green-eyed bee in her bonnet stung her repeatedly, she figured it was time to grab some attention for herself and her Department of Education cronies.

Once the truant officer left our house without my signature on his Failure To Attend School Notice, I decided to compose my own contract for the local school officials. I call it the Parent-School Compact. I met with the school principal a few days later and presented him with my document. I also informed him I'd be happy to fight the truancy (which we were not) on the front page of the local paper, recruit other parents to homeschooling while hanging out at his school, and my child would have her own personal bodyguard while attending his little prison. Needless to say, he refused to sign my contract and basically told me that if, in the future, we didn't bother him, he wouldn't bother us.  We never heard from our school district again and we didn't enroll in the state's home-study program either.

The following is a copy of that contract, without our personal information and composed so that others may copy and use this document to their own advantage. Feel free to copy, make adjustments, add or subtract your own requirements, and use as you see fit.


Parent-School Compact

Telephone #:

Telephone #:

Re: (child’s name)

2012-2013 School Year

In the cooperative interest of ensuring a positive partnership between your school and we, parents, and by pursuing great expectations for the success of our son/daughter as a student at (name of school), we agree to support the following Parent-School Compact:

The Faculty and Administration of (name of school) will:

-refrain from any form of discipline towards our son/daughter since we are being forced to send our child to you under the threat of imprisonment and fines;
-under no circumstances prevent our son/daughter from learning freely and with an open, inquisitive mind;
-treat our son/daughter with the respect and dignity they would wish for their own family;
-provide a minimum of two hours of recreational reading time each day for our child;
-refrain from any form of grading including grade-level, group-level or team-training;
-refrain from using report cards, portfolios and other forms of assessment;
-refrain from assigning any form of homework, research or the equivalent thereof;
-refrain from giving or presenting any form of oral or written questions, quizzes and testing or the equivalent thereof, including SAT’s;
-provide a quiet and orderly area for the purpose of eating meals or snacks and refrain from sending our child to the school cafeteria for such a purpose;
-provide a minimum of 2 hours of computer access time daily;
-provide a minimum of 3 hours of private music, voice and dance lessons weekly;
-provide instruction in Latin, U.S. Constitution, U.S.Government & Law, American History, World History, Greek History, Roman History, Advanced Math, Advanced Science, Business & Marketing, and Classic Literature;
-refrain from discussing or presenting any pagan, school version, or commercial holidays and symbols such as Kawaanza, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Santa Claus, Easter Bunny, Jack-O-Lantern, Leprechauns, etc.;
-refrain from presenting or discussing any such topics as sexual intercourse, puberty, sexuality, AIDS, homosexuality, sexually transmitted diseases, peer pressure, self-esteem, career counseling, values clarification, personal and family history;
-refrain from requiring our son/daughter to raise his/her hand for permission or conversational purposes;
-refrain from denying our son/daughter restroom privileges, water and food sources at any moment or time of day;
-refrain from allowing our son/daughter to be in the presence of any school health counselor, career counselor, or psychological counselor at any time before, during, or after school hours;
-refrain from restricting our son’s/daughter’s choice of clothing and apparel;
-refrain from testing our son/daughter by special education instructors or to determine the need for special education classes or services;
-refrain from placing our son/daughter in any special education classes and/or subject them to any special education instruction.

The parents of this (school name) child will:

-attend school orientations, open houses and parent-teacher meetings;
-treat school personnel with the respect and dignity they’ve earned;
-encourage independent reading;
-guarantee regular attendance, promptness and readiness to pursue a meaningful education;
-minimize medical/dental appointments whenever necessary;
-volunteer in the classroom and/or school in a way that supports our child’s education;
-provide an escort of our choosing at all times for our child during the hours he/she is in attendance or public school.

I agree with this Parent-School Compact and pledge to do everything in my power to enhance student achievement and promote effective home-school communication.

_________________________________________     Date____/____/____
(signature of parent/guardian)

_________________________________________     Date____/____/____
(signature of child/student)

__________________________________________     Date____/____/____
(signature of child’s teacher)

__________________________________________     Date____/____/____
(signature of principal)


A stop on one of our many homeschool excursions to explore the country

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