Thursday, December 31, 2009

Swedish boy taken into state care because of homeschooling

Alliance Defence Fund (ADF) report on a very sad case coming from Sweden with possible implications for every country in which parents decide to home school their children and which is party to the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
see ADF report

Dominic Johansson is a 7 year old Christian boy educated at home by his parents Christer (Swedish) and Annie (Indian). While home education is legal in Sweden, the ability to do so is limited and the government is seeking to ban it all together. Operatively however, it remains legal making this case all the more startling. The family, partly because of harassment by local education authorities who refused to provide any of the necessary texts to the family to educate Dominic, had decided to move to India to pursue missions work with orphanages.

In June, after the family had boarded the plane to India, Swedish authorities also came on board and took Dominic from the family. Citing the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child as their authority for the taking, a Swedish court of appeals upheld the state's decision to do so two weeks ago. This treaty has been adopted by over 190 countries and it is tragic to see it being used in this way to break up intact families, pitting childrens rights against their parents.

The State should never usurp a family's right to be the primary educator of a child and nor should it make value judgments about how well a child is being cared for based on that families religious faith.

Further links are attached for reference.