NC Judge Orders Successfully Performing Homeschooled Children Back to Public School for Broader Exposure and Challenge to Their Mother’s Religious Training

North Carolina Husband and Wife have three preteen Children.

In 2005, Wife begins homeschooling Children.

Children reportedly enjoy homeschooling and perform two years above their respective grades in standardized tests.

If it ain’t broke … ?

Well, Husband and Wife are in the midst of a divorce.

Husband does not not dispute that Children are “thriving” with homeschooling.

And there is no suggestion that Husband is motivated by alimony avoidance.

Instead, Husband contends that Wife belongs to a “cult” that encourages homeschooling, with a religious slant to the curriculum, including science.

Wife does not dispute the religious component of her curriculum, but insists that the Children are doing very well, better than they did in public school.

She also suggests that she is being persecuted for her religious beliefs.

The North Carolina Court has ordered the Children back to public school on a temporary basis.

The Court justifies its ruling by indicating that the Husband is entitled to influence the Children’s education and religious training as well as the Wife.

There is also an indication that the Court cites as a benefit of public school that the Children will be exposed to other beliefs and have the beliefs Wife taught them “challenged” by others in public school.

Four percent of North Carolina’s school children through 16 years of age are homeschooled.

The case illustrates the complex issues presented when parents’ religious beliefs and educational values differ dramatically.