By John-Henry Westen

Busekros familyNUREMBERG, February 5, 2007 ( – The Canadian and American homeschool associations are calling their memberships to take action on the case of a homeschooled teenager in Germany who has been taken away from her family and placed in a child psychiatry unit.

  Last Thursday, a 15-year-old homeschooled girl, Melissa Busekros, was forcibly removed from her parent’s custody by over 15 police officers. The homeschooled girl has been placed in the child psychiatry unit of the Nuremberg clinic.

  Home school legal defense explains the situation stressing that this is a case of Germany attempting to keep down a surge in the popularity of homeschooling which remains illegal in Germany.  “Homeschooling was first banned under Adolf Hitler, and that ban is still enforced today,” says the association.

“In the summer of 2005, when Melissa was 15, she was told she would have to repeat the seventh grade at the government school because she was failing math and Latin. She had good grades in the rest of her classes, so her parents tutored her at home for those two subjects. When the school officials found out they were angry and then expelled Melissa, so the family began to homeschool full time,” explains HSLDA.

“However, the Youth Welfare office then took the family to court because they were homeschooling. Then, on Tuesday, January 30, 2007, social workers and police officers came to the Busekros home and forcibly took Melissa to the child psychiatric unit where she was questioned for four hours before she was returned home. Then two days later, 15 police officers and social workers came to the Busekros home and took Melissa away from her parents by force and placed her in the child psychiatric unit.

“According to Melissa’s father, Hubert Busekros, this treatment was justified by the psychiatrist’s finding two days previously that Melissa was supposedly developmentally delayed by one year and that she suffered from school phobia.

  A German education group which supports the right of parents to homeschool their children, The Netzwerk Bildungsfreiheit [the Network for Freedom of Education], has condemned the police/state action.

  HSLDA in Canada and the US is asking its membership to pray for the family and to call or email the German Embassy and give them this message:

“We are shocked to hear of the Busekros’ homeschooled daughter Melissa being removed from the custody of her parents and being placed in a child psychiatric unit. This is an outrage that hearkens back to the Nazi era. We cannot believe a free nation would put a homeschooled child in a psychiatric ward for ‘school phobia.’ The attack on the homeschool families throughout Germany must stop.”

  In Canada:
  German Embassy
  1 Waverley Street
  Ottawa, ON, K2P 0T8
  Tel.: 613-232-1101 Fax: 613-594-9330
  Email: [email protected]

  In the US:
  German Embassy