Ongoing Battle to Restore Parental Rights in Texas

Two weeks ago I had a great time at the THSC State Convention and Family Conference in The Woodlands, Texas. I talked with a couple of folks at the conference who reminded me that THSC had intervened on their behalf in situations with government officials who threatened their right to home school. Both of them told me, “I never thought something like that would happen to me.” There are hundreds of stories of home schooling parents in Texas whose parental rights are challenged and they all thought the same thing.

In the ongoing battle to restore parental rights in Texas, we have intervened on behalf of a member of our association in a grandparent access case. This father never thought he would be in this situation either. However, after his wife’s death her parents sued him under the grandparent access statute, and under “temporary” orders from a district court his daughter was placed with the grandparents; he has not seen her in over two years.

In an affidavit, one of the former co-petitioners in the case revealed that the attorneys for the grandparents told them that the case was very weak but they had a chance to win if they were willing to “outspend the father.” They explained that in cases where one side had more money than the other the facts were irrelevant as a practical matter. Their strategy was to force the father to exhaust his resources and thus allow the grandparents to gain permanent custody of their granddaughter.

THSC has retained attorneys to represent this father in what could be a very expensive fight to sustain his parental rights. One reason we have done so is that case law needs to be established in these kinds of cases in which many judges allow non-parents to have the same rights and standing as parents – this must not be allowed to stand. We have been told that the cost for this case could be over $100,000 and we will need help from the home school community to meet this need. Please pray for this father and his daughter and for all of those involved in this case that justice would be done quickly.