The German family seeking asylum in the United States so they can homeschool their children will take their battle to the Supreme Court, according to their legal team.
Uwe and Hannelore Romeike, evangelical Christians, came to the U.S. seeking political asylum after they were prosecuted in Germany for homeschooling their children. An immigration judge granted them asylum in 2010, but the U.S. government appealed, arguing that laws against homeschooling don’t violate the family’s human rights. An immigration appeals board sided with the government, and the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals last week denied the family’s request for a new hearing.
Now, the Home School Legal Defense Association, which is representing the family, said they will take the fight to the Supreme Court.
“This is not over yet,” organization founder Michael Farris said in a release this week. “We are taking this case to the Supreme Court because we firmly believe that this family deserves the freedom that this country was founded on. Despite Friday’s order, the Sixth Circuit’s opinion contains two clear errors: First, they wholly ignored Germany’s proclamation that a central reason for banning homeschooling is to suppress religious minorities. Second, the Sixth Circuit erred when it failed to address the claim that parental rights are so fundamental that no government can deny parents the right to choose an alternative to the public schools.”
The Romeikes say they will face substantial fines and possible jail time if they return to Germany.
“The German High Court is on record for saying that religious homeschoolers should be targeted and severely punished, yet our Justice Department sees nothing wrong with that,” Farris said. “The attorney general and Sixth Circuit are ignoring critical evidence and are trying to send back this family who is trying to stay in our country legally. We are hopeful that the Supreme Court will go the other way and see what the original immigration judge saw: that this family and other religious homeschoolers in Germany are being persecuted for what they believe is the right way to raise their children.”