Could what Germany or other nations believe about education affect
homeschooling here in the United States?
The Romeikes feel they can no longer
live in Germany, in daily fear that government authorities might carry their
children off to school in a police car. Fear
caused the Romeikes to flee, but faith in
God and freedom drew them to the United States. Their case, Romeike vs Holder,
is still pending in court, but the Department of Justice has argued against granting the Romeikes asylum.
Clearly, what the United States Department of Justice believes about homeschooling is influencing the potential deportation of the Romeike family. Could
what Germany or other nations believe
about education affect homeschooling
here in the United States? Yes, and that is
where the Common Core State Standards
comes into focus.
Common Core State Standards are a
“state led” set of standards initially adopted by forty-six states, most in 2010.
The standards provide the framework
for a national education standard. Along
with the standards, assessments and cur-ricula are being developed to ensure that
students are meeting these standards no
matter where they live. When proponents talk about the need for national
standards, they often talk about how
our children are falling behind other nations academically and say the Common
Core Standards must be “internationally
What does that mean?
One of the architects of Common Core
State Standards, Achieve, Inc., defines
international benchmarking as “analyzing
high-performing education systems and
identifying ways to improve our own systems based on those findings.”
How will international
benchmarking be used?
According to a report by the National
Governors Association, benchmarking
will help education policy makers in the
United States “identify the qualities and
characteristics of education systems that
best prepare students for success in the
What does international
benchmarking mean for
homeschooling in the U.S.?
Common Core State Standards are patterned after the educational systems
and best practices used in other nations. Because nations such as Finland,
France, Singapore, Germany, Japan,
and others consistently out-perform
the United States on international standardized tests such as Program for In-ternational;Student;Assessment;(PISA)
or Trends in International Mathemat-ics;and;Science;Study;(TIMSS),;policy
makers believe the U.S. system must
When the internationally benchmarked national standards are fully implemented, our educational system will
be transformed to look more and more
like the educational systems of those who
are doing better on the assessments in order to achieve better scores. That means
Helping the Romeikes
Learn more about the Romeikes’
/ romeike.asp, and sign the White
House petition to stop deportation
of the Romeikes at this link: tinyurl
a more centralized, controlled form of
education like that currently found in
Europe, where homeschooling is not tolerated and in the worst cases illegal, as
is the case in Germany. And that takes
us back to the Romeikes and the United
States government. Despite the fact that a
judge initially granted the Romeikes political asylum, the Obama administration
is sending a strong signal that it does not
believe parents have the liberty to direct
the education of their children.
Homeschoolers must fight for the Romeikes’ freedom to stay in the U.S., and
we also need to fight against the internationally benchmarked Common Core
State Standards to ensure that all parents
living in the United States continue to be
free to educate their children. Currently,
a lack of "internationally benchmarked"
standards by the United States is one
of the biggest barriers to widespread
acceptance of universal international
standards. Once the United States is
aligned to international standards, it will
be easier to persuade other countries to
align as well.
Despite the fact that a judge initially granted the Romeikes political asylum, the
Obama administration is sending a strong signal that it does not believe parents
have the liberty to direct the education of their children.