Swedish Enforcement Agency demands a 4600€ fine of home educating family
During the last two years a dozen Swedish home educating families have fled the home country from threats of fines, investigations from the social authorities and potentially having their children taken away in custody. However, up until now no one has had to actually pay any fine. The threat of fines has simply been used as a way to force coercion or exile. Most families have chosen exile after which the municipality has not moved the fine further, a kind of humanity in the interpretation of a law hostile to human rights. Maybe the authorities have felt that the painful process of being forced to leave your country is punishment enough, and strong enough to set an example. After all, the municipality will have solved their problem of having a home educating family in their statistics, and can report a successful zero-tolerance of home education to higher authorities.
But today a Swedish municipality has broken this ”humane” procedure. Apart from having forced a home educating family in exile with all its pains and financial costs, this municipality has also actively worked to get a 4600€ fine executed by the Swedish Enforcement Agency. If the fine is not paid the family will face distraint. Then living in another Nordic country will not help. The arms of the Swedish Enforcement Agency are long.
The Swedish political party, the Moderates, are heavily responsible
The political majority in the municipality demanding this fine is the same centre-right coalition as the present Swedish Government with the Moderates as the largest party. The Moderate municipality political leader gives a cold answer to ROHUS question on why this fine for a family who has already left Sweden: ”We only follow the law” and ”we want to set an example”. Swedish home educators in exile can assure everyone that there is no necessity to set any example. Being forced in exile is enough of an example. The only effect is that home educators will flee earlier, a form of school-political cleansing of Sweden. Putting together all the impressions from this municipality it presents itself like pure personal harassment.
ROHUS will pay the entire fine for its Fine Fund
Home education has a strong support among many Swedes and ROHUS has through the years been able to build a fund with the only purpose to pay fines for ROHUS members who face distraint. This means that ROHUS has paid the entire fine and thus been able to keep the family from a major financial distress. ROHUS is very grateful for those who have generously contributed to the Fine Fund. Its mere existence has made a great impact on Swedish home educators and kept moral high.
Support the ROHUS Find Fund
However, a payment of 4600€ means that ROHUS has to strengthen its Fine Fund again. Those who want to help can make a payment to the ROHUS account:
IBAN SE21 9500 0099 6026 0480 3102, BIC-code: NDEASESS
and mark the payment with ”The Fine Fund”. The fund only pays fines, nothing else.
Facts on home education
Home education is the fastest growing form of education on the planet. Contrary to popular belief home education produces excellent results both academically and socially, even by parents with no formal education in pedagogics. This means that many learning theories have to be reformulated, and only in recent years has psychology been able to explain the phenomena which presents a new picture of the successful factors for learning.
Home education is most common in the USA where about 3% of all children of school age are home educated, but home education is legal in most of the democratic world, and even in Russia and parts of China. The exceptions are Germany with its school law from 1938, and today Sweden with its brand new school law. A dozen families with around 25 children all together have left Sweden in exile in order to be able to continue to safely home educate. The number may seem small but is about 25% of the previous Swedish home educating population. These families now live in exile in Denmark, France, Canada and the Aland Islands, a Swedish speaking province of Finland, which is the most popular place for Swedish home educators in exile.
The Global Home Education Conference
The President of ROHUS is the chairman of the world’s first Global Home Education Conference in Berlin on November 1-4, 2012. The conference will present educational, legal and human rights experts on the topic of home education. More information at www.ghec2012.org
ROHUS - the Swedish Association for Home Education - is a religiously and politically unaffiliated organisation supporting the right to home educate in Sweden regardless of philosophy or motif, www.rohus.org. Today several of ROHUS board members live in exile outside Sweden.