Ann: Last month, in a post called Fear-Mongering in California, we saw how one California truant officer is choosing to misinterpret the private school rules by suggesting that homeschoolers submit themselves to his personal opinion of what the law should be. The comments keep rolling in.
Don?Äôt be intimidated in the slightest by attendance officer
Gilroy Dispatch, California, By Jackie Orsi, CHN Legal Rights Committee, Hayward, Wednesday, June 01, 2005
Jackie closes her informative letter:
If Mr. Valadez will read the full text of the laws he cited, he will find that his legal authority is strictly limited to verifying that a private school has filed an affidavit with the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. No appointments, no requests for exemption, no review board, no truancy proceedings, no referrals to the Santa Clara County District Attorney – a simple phone call to the State Department of Education will do the trick. So the good news, Mr. Valadez, is that your job is a whole lot easier than you thought.
Ann: What part of the legal term "affidavit" does Mr. Valadez not understand? Gilroy homeschoolers understand the term – see below.
I do like Jackie’s cheery closing sentiment, although I don’t really think Mr. Valadez is interested in making his job easier. I think he’s out for blood – homeschooling blood.
This homeschooler will not be calling the attendance officer
Gilroy Dispatch, California, Unsigned letter to the editor, Monday, June 27, 2005
To comply with the actual law, as opposed to Mr. Valadez?Äôs misinterpretation of it, I file an annual affidavit, known as the R-4, in which I swear under penalty of perjury that my children are in attendance.
Ann: You can’t blame the anonymous writer for not signing his/her letter. Might as well paint a bright red target on your kids’ necks in Gilroy because Valadez is looking for you. Garlands of garlic won’t help. It takes guts to publicly defy bureaucratic bullying, even anonymously. The writer ups the ante in his/her close:
Lastly, as a taxpayer, I am appalled at the waste of public funds occasioned by Mr. Valadez?Äôs meddling with law-abiding R-4 filers. It could be even more expensive for the district in legal fees and potentially in damages should some homeschooler pursue a civil rights violation.
Therefore, I would like to see the Gilroy School Board direct Superintendent Edwin Diaz to direct Mr. Frank Valadez to confine his attention to cases of truancy.
Ann: Me too, Mr/Ms Anonymous, me too. I am weary of homeschoolers being profiled for regulation when kids go truant from public school.