Liberty endangered

Right to homeschool in France to be curtailed –

In France a liberty right, that has enabled parents to home educate their children there, is about to be removed. A pretext for the new law, that has already provoked public resistance, is allegedly poor “socialisation” in the home.

Until now our western neighbour has been a haven for homeschoolers fleeing Germany’s forced schooling. This could soon change. Largely unnoticed by the French public, a legal bill was introduced in the parliament of Paris (senate) on December 18, 2013. The legislative proposal by parliamentarians of the consevative partyis set to massively curtail the right to homeschool in France.

Politicians from culture and education committees justify the proposed bill by asserting that “socialisation” is a “goal of school education”. In order for all children to experience an “undisturbed” development they need to “discover their peers’ diversity of life conditions and cultures”. Home education on the other hand doesn’t allow for this “collective dimension” of going to a school. The bill maintains that home education must be an exception, limited to cases of disability only; it cannot be “…a pretext … for subjecting the child… to mental conditioning… ideological or religious”.

In order to avert this drastic curtailment of parents’ rights a French Internet petition is demanding the relinquishment of the legal bill. Until now more than 24.000 supporters could be won, the petioners are aiming at receiving 30.000 signatures. You don’t need to be fluent in French to sign after having submitted your email address. A special software filters out multiple signatures automatically. .

Citizens fighting for freedom of education have received good reception not only in France but also in Belgium as well as in England.  Not without reason the development towards socialisation of children is being closely followed in the so-called “motherland of democracy”. A comment in one of the blogs calling for support of the petition puts it in a nutshell: “Come on friends – please sign this! We don’t want the French to give our government any funny ideas!

However, in Germany no one needs to fear that politicians might be inspired by socialist ideas abroad when it comes to restricting freedom rights. In that respect we are perfectly self-sufficient. After all, the “idea” of collective schooling by force is a genuinely German invention. Credits for having put this into practice go back to the vanguard of German-socialism par excellence. After so many years that person is still alive and kicking – even in Paris.


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