Religion

Homeschooling Parents Claim Christian Persecution Because Texas Wants Proof Kids Are Educated

| by Michael Allen

Michael and Laura McIntyre are in a legal battle at the Texas Supreme Court over whether or not they have to prove that their homeschooled children are actually educated.

Laura began homeschooling her nine children in 2004 inside an office of a now-defunct motorcycle dealership that she ran with Michael and other family members in El Paso, Texas, reports KRGV.

Most of the McIntyres' kids are grown now, but Laura still homeschools one child.

The McIntyres have been accused of not teaching their kids basic educational lessons because the couple is waiting for the "rapture," a theological concept that claims Jesus will remove Christians from the earth before the Great Tribulation begins.

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The word "rapture" never actually appears in the Bible, but is based on 1 Thessalonians 4:17.

Michael's twin brother Tracy, who co-owned the motorcycle dealership, claimed that he never saw the children reading, doing math, or using a computer. Tracy said they would just sing and play instruments.

Tracy recalled that one of the kids said that they were going to be raptured.

Tori, the McIntyres' 17-tear-old daughter, ran away from home because she wanted to go to school. However, when the El Paso School District asked the McIntyres to produce some proof of Tori's education, the family sued the school district instead.

In August 2014, the Texas Eighth District Court of Appeals ruled that educational requirements did not interfere with the the McIntyres’ “free exercise of religion,” noted RawStory.com.

The appeals court also said: "No parents have ever prevailed in any reported case on a theory that they have an absolute constitutional right to educate their children in the home, completely free of any state supervision, regulation, or requirements. They do not have an ‘absolute constitutional right to home school.'"

The McIntyres are hoping the Texas Supreme Court will rule in their favor. If they lose, the ruling could affect other families who homeschool kids in the Lone Star state.

The McIntyres claim that the El Paso School District opposes Christians, and is using a "startling assertion of sweeping governmental power," reports KRGV.

Laura claimed in court papers that she used a Christian curriculum that is also taught in private religious schools that her kids used to attend.

Sources: BibleHub.com, RawStory.com, KRGV / Photo Credit: Tim Patterson/Flickr