Mark Mendoza, the director of the ALPHA initiative for the El Paso Independent School District who was also sued by Laura and Michael McIntyre, said the ruling does not mean the school district will interfere with a parent's right to educate children.
"The most important thing is the fact that this really clarifies the role that the school district plays when it is suspected that home school may not be happening," Mendoza
became involved when the children's grandparents - Gene and Shirene McIntyre - met with him in November 2006 because they did not feel their grandchildren were not being educated, the ruling said.
Additional questions were raised after Mendoza
confirmed that Tori, the eldest of the McIntyre children, ran away from home at 17, "so she
could attend school," the ruling said.
said that Tori was unable to provide any information regarding the level of her
education or the curriculum of her
home school education, the ruling said.
In December of 2006, Mendoza
and other officials from the school district visited the home of the McIntyre's who refused to "sign the form or provide any other information regarding their home school curriculum," according to the ruling.
A letter from the Home School Legal Defense Association
claimed that the McIntyre's were "in full compliance," but the letter did not reflect that the attorney was licensed in Texas, or did it indicate the lawyer had personal knowledge of the educational studies occurring at the McIntyre home.
Additional truancy warnings, requests for conferences and notices were then provided to the McIntyre home, but they did not cooperate, the ruling said.
In July 2007, Laura and Michael McIntyre filed a lawsuit against EPISD, former superintendent Lorenzo GarcÃa, and Mendoza.
The cases against GarcÃa and Mendoza