While Quebec law is clear on parents’ legal right to opt for home-learning, trying to exercise this right can be a strenuous and fearful experience. A great deal of confusion results from the numerous discrepancies in the way that school boards in the province treat home-learning and the extent of support and guidance they are willing to provide in developing and carrying out education plans. In these circumstances, one of the keys to successful home-learning is for parents to remain determined and well-informed of their rights and obligations.
Narang & associates is a Montreal law firm dedicated to social justice. Two of our lawyers visited Centre Communidée in June 2011, when we met with several homeschooling parents to better understand their legal needs. We were surprised to hear of the various obstacles that home-learners face and particularly troubled by the level of fear that authorities have managed to create amongst parents who decide that institutional learning is not right for their family.
Following the meeting, we decided to offer the following package of legal services to the families of home-learners for a flat annual fee of $150. Those who sign up after December 1st pay $250. Regardless of when you sign up, your coverage will expire at the beginning of the following school year.
Our primary goal will be to facilitate the realization of parents’ right to pursue home-learning in Quebec, through individual and group consultations. The service would include, at a minimum:
1. Access to counsel in urgent situations if parents are contacted by the school board, school, youth protection or Ministry of Education regarding home-learning.
2. Copy of the annually revised handbook: “Essential Legal Guidelines for the Families of Home-Learners”
3. Two-hour question & answer period: We will come to Centre Communidée to meet with parents and answer their questions. For 2016, the Q&A will take place on Tuesday October 18 from 1:30 to 3:30pm. (For those who are not signed up for legal services with Geeta Narang, it costs $20 per person, deductible from your fees if you decide to sign up. For people who have already signed up, it’s free.)