Sunday, November 9, 2014

School Fine Story

Here in Hessen (from the north part of the German state), a legal case has wrapped up that went to the Constitutional Court.

The issue?  A family with nine kids.....decided to home-school their kids.  Hessen law goes to an extreme, if you are the parent, and you've gone to this strategy of schooling...with potentially up to six months in county jail and a fair-sized fine.  I should note....that's the far end of the spectrum and usually reserved for parents who just look the other way for fifty days of missed school.

As the journalists have laid out the story....the older of the kids had done local in-school situations, and appear to have been taken out of certain classes, which is legal by the standards.  Any class which would conflict with a religious an ethics class or religious class.....can be skipped with written notes ahead of time.  Math and science?  No.....unstoppable.

A regional court had heard the case back in the spring of 2013....deciding the parents were guilty but wanting to limit punishment to 140-days of missed school, times five Euro a day.  Less than a thousand Euro.

The Constitution Court came to agree with the regional court.  End of discussion.

Americans often get the wrong perception on how this works, and why home-schooling just isn't approved within German society.

It's entirely possible that you and your wife finish up basic school by the eighth three years of apprentice schooling (which means half the day is occupational training and the other half split between seven subjects on a "lite" basis).  The graduation occurs and a certificate is awarded.

More than fifty percent of German society falls into this category.  If you measured an German kid against an American kid.....the German kid is usually a year ahead by the eighth grade (my humble opinion).  At that point though....things get kinda maxed out.

I would humbly agree....a university graduate of the US, or Germany....might be an adequate teacher.  The odds of finding some an acceptable law where such a person might be a home-school situation?  Zero.  It'd be deemed unfair to the rest of the citizens in the country.

So, you can imagine opening up the door for some German parents who get this 'itch' to home-school but they really aren't of the same quality or capability that you'd expect.  Toss in the fact that most all German school classes are religious-free (math, science, language, English, etc).....and it's not worth an argument.

On a yearly basis.....there's at least one or two episodes like this....where some German parents take up the idea of home-schooling and find state folks not willing to compromise.  You have two general choices.....go to the local public school system, or pick various private school operations (the Catholic Church offers options, and along commercial operations).

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