German homeschooler taken into custody, child responds
Update 3: For further updates, I've dedicated a single post to summarizing the information as I come across it. Feel free to comment or let me know of other information. Just click here.

Update 2:
Wilkommen zu meinen vielen Besucher aus Deutschland! Wenn Sie Ihre Meinung zum Thema "Homeschooling" oder zum Falle von Melissa Busekros mitteilen möchten, können Sie gerne kommentieren. Ich kann es gerne übersetzen!

: The AMN Blog has published more contact information for anyone interested. Also, Scatty kindly clarified Melissa's comment about a "seahorse." It is a swimming qualification and the correction is now in the text.

(This was forwarded to me by a person who is homeschooling in Germany and is closer to the case. She is trying to find ways to support the Busekros family through this affair. It originates from Melissa. You can read more background information here. Note, I'm not sure it would be ethical to release the name of the person questioning Melissa since she is not a public person and has not made any public statement so far as I know. Here, she will remain Ms. M. My insertions are in italics.)
Alone with Ms. M and several police officers:

Hello, so you are Melissa?
Would you please come with us? We are bringing you to the clinic in Nuerenburg so that the family judge, Ms. Frank-Daufine, a psychologist and I can talk with you.
--And if I don't wish to come?
Then unfortunately we will have to take you anyway.
--Okay, but first I need to finish my breakfast and brush my teeth.

Then I am escorted by Ms. M. and half a dozen police officers in three civilian police cars to the police headquarters in Erlangen.
Underway with Ms. M:
--Why do you need 15 police officers to pick up one girl?
Fifteen is a little exaggerated...who are you asking? (laughing) I don't know exactly.

To the following questions: I no longer remember the order and have certainly forgotten a few.

When did you wake up this morning?
--Around 5:30.
...? So early? That is an hour before my children. Do you always get up so early? Then we woke up about the same time today...
--No, only when I shower. Otherwise at six. Sometimes not until 6:30.
6:30 is a good time. That is when I normally get up.

What do you normally do when the other children are in school?
--??? I also have school! Homeschool!
Aha! That is interesting. What do you do there?
--I take for example Volkshochschule (adult education center) courses in English and French. In English, I am in the Advanced English Course from Cambridge.
Aha. That is wonderful. And what do you do in your free time?
--I go swimming once per week and meet often with friends.
Great! Wouldn't your siblings like to be homeschooled when they see how nice that is?
--...Mhmmm...(think carefully what to say, it could be a trap)...Well, it also difficult to motivate one's self, to learn more and not get distracted.
And your siblings see that as well?

You live across a municipality. Are you Baptists?
No? I thought you were. What are you then?
--We belong to the evangelical reformed church.
Which church is that then in the city?
--The Hugenot Church
Ah, that one. Can you explain to me how that differs from the Baptist churches?
--Um, the only baptize adults. I don't know any more.

Sometime, after a thousand unsychronized traffic lights (a thousand red waves, it's a German expression), we arrived at the police headquarters in Erlangen.
--Cool, I've always wanted to see the police headquarters from the inside!
(Quick, irritated look from the side) Really?

Then I streamed in the building along with a flood of police officer at my side.

In the office of two of my bodyguards (that I suppose were there to protect me from my parents, in case they should try to take me back), I waited about half an hour with Ms. M, until the family judge could be picked up from her home. I had no appetite for the coffee (which I don't drink anyway), or for any other offered food or drink. I had just eaten! Besides, I didn't feel in a very good mood. The police were really quite nice. On their bulletin board, they had some announcements they showed me. Of triathalons and marathons and even one about the seahorse (a swimming qualification...thanks Scatty!). I think the police found it rather pleasant. They explained to me, after all, that they had to trouble themselves with a girl who was a little older than I who was always drunk and annoyed people at the train station.

Finally, we arrived at the clinic in Nuerenberg.
I have no personal contact with this family and know nothing other than what was sent to me from Netzwerk-Bildungsfreiheit and this email. The case, however, seems to highlight well how authorities are dealing with homeschoolers and their general opinion of the purpose of "socialization." This case is particularly interesting because the girl in question should no longer be subject to the compulsory education laws, but the parents have defied the recommendations of the school authority. (**She should, however, be apprenticed if not attending school according to the law.) Clearly, the state's interest in (and definition of) education supercedes the rights of the parents and the child involved.

Is this what it means when the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child says children have a right to an education?

If you would like to send a note of encouragement to Melissa, this is the address of the clinic.

Melissa Busekros
Klinikum Nürnberg-Nord
Haus 48 B
Prof.-Ernst-Nathan-Str. 1
90419 Nürnberg

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