Category: education

cps, education
Teaching children to Read and Write


Most parents, at one point or another, frets over the education and the development of their children. Many concerned parents research and seek information on the topic of teaching children to read and write. I for one, am glad to see so many parents wanting to get an early start for their children in reading and writing, because studies have shown that developing these abilities early on before entering school provides numerous benefits and advantages later on as the child progresses through school.

More worrisome should be the fact that over one third, 38% to be exact, of all grade 4 students cannot even achieve a basic level of reading ability according to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). This is an alarming statistic. Will your child become one of the 38% who cannot reach basic reading achievement by grade 4? For most children, this poor ability to read can be easily prevented with early phonemic awareness teaching.

Reading must begin early in the life of a child, whether it is just an alphabet letter, a word, a sentence, a paragraph, or a story. Teaching children how to read must begin early on, and children should be exposed to books, stories, rhymes, and be read to on a daily basis. Children as young as 2 years old can learn to read if you teach them to read with the proper instructions. Please watch the video below of a 2 year 11 months old reading randomly constructed sentences.

As Lida Williams said, almost 100 years ago:

Phonics is not a method of teaching reading, but it is a necessary part of every good, modern method. It is the key to word mastery, and word mastery is one of the first essentials in learning to read. A knowledge of the sounds of letters, and of the effect of the position of the letter upon its sound, is an essential means of mastering the mechanics of reading, and of enabling children to become independent readers.

100 years later, this still holds true. There has been a great debate on what method of teaching is best to teach children how to read: whether phonics or the whole language method is better. The whole language learning to read method is more of a “word memorization” plan, where a young child is supposed to memorize the “shape” of the word, and say it.

It is important to distinguish the difference between phonological awareness andphonemic awareness. Phonological awareness is very broad, and includes phonemic awareness as a sub category. Phonemic awareness is very narrow, and it is only focused on the phonemes, which are the individual sounds of letters. There are no shortage of studies which have repeatedly found and concluded that teaching phonemic awareness to young children produces exceptional reading and spelling abilities. You can read more about research on phonemic awareness here.

The whole language method simply expects a child to “read” when presented reading material, and by memorizing sight words. The phonics method is a bottom up approach where you teach children to read in a logical and sequential order. You first teach children the alphabet letters and the sounds they represent; then you teach children to combine (or blend) various letter sounds together to form words; which is then followed by reading sentences and simple stories. This is a logical progression for children learning to read, where they develop accuracy in decoding words and pronouncing words. This method of teaching also helps the child to spell correctly.

There’s no doubt that phonics and phonemic awareness instruction is the superior method to teach children how to read. We have successfully used phonemic awareness instructions to teach our children at age 2 to read words, sentences, paragraphs, and simple story books. If you would like to learn about our simple, step-by-step method to teach your children to read and write, please click below:

Teach your child to read today using our step-by-step, proven method for teaching young children to read


accountability, awareness, child, children, cps, education, families, family, foster care, government, home, law, legal, social workers
CPS v. Home Schoolers… FAQ on Dealing With School District


Truancy laws are very often used by CPS so its a good idea to be familiar with what could happen.

If you are homeschooling in Texas, it might be a good idea to be familiar with what you could be up against when it comes to CPS and your child’s education.  Many home schoolers find themselves being accused of truancy when they are being schooled at home.

So before you find yourself being charged with Parental Failure to Abide by the Compulsory Attendance Laws, followed by Neglectful Supervision, here’s a FAQ sheet on DEALING WITH THE SCHOOL DISTRICT.


This article is reprinted from the Handbook for Texas Home Schoolers published by the Texas Home School Coalition Association and may be copied only in its entirety, including this paragraph of credit and information. The Handbook for Texas Home Schoolers is a manual for home educators in Texas that includes information about where to find curricula; the laws in Texas; the how-to’s of home schooling; graduation; national, state, regional, and local organizations; and samples of letters referenced in this article. It can be purchased from the Texas Home School Coalition Association at PO Box 6747, Lubbock, TX 79493, for $20 (includes tax and shipping). For more information, contact the THSC Association at (806) 744-4441,, or

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS when dealing with the school district.

  • I have decided to home school. What do I need to do? My child is enrolled in public school.

The first thing you need to do is obtain a curriculum. It is wise to find a local support group to help you set up your school.

Although you are not legally required to contact the school district, chances are very high that you will receive a visit from an attendance officer if you simply remove your child. Therefore, once you have a curriculum in hand, write the principal of the school your child attends and tell him that you are withdrawing your child to teach him at home. If the school contacts you and says that you must do more (come to the central office, fill out a form, or something else along those lines), do not go to the school. Your reply should be that if they will provide their request to you in writing, you will be glad to respond. If you receive a request of any kind, you are only required to give them a simple letter of assurance.

  • How many days per year must we have school?

The Texas Education Code requires that public schools meet 180 days per year; public school students must attend 170 days/year. This applies to public schools only. Home schools in Texas are private schools and the state of Texas does not regulate the number of days per year that private schools must be in session or the number of days a student must attend.

  • How many hours a day must we conduct school?

Home schools in Texas are private schools and are not regulated by the state. No minimum hours are required. You will probably find that your student can accomplish more work in the same period of time than public school child if for no other reason than because of not having to stand in line, wait for roll call, and the like.

  • May someone else homeschool my child?

Yes. Home schools in Texas have been determined by the Texas Supreme Court to be private schools. Private schools are not regulated by the state of Texas. There are no requirements such as teacher certification or curriculum approval. The ruling of the Leeper case states that a parent “or one standing in parental authority” may educate a child. However, if a person is teaching more than three students outside her family, she may encounter problems with local zoning ordinances, and the state may require that she be licensed for childcare.

  • May my child participate in classes at the public school?

That is a local school decision. It is possible for a public school to allow this, but it is not likely at this time. The rules are somewhat different for special needs students; check with your local district.

  • May my child participate in extracurricular activities at the public school?

At this time, a local public school could allow your child to play in the band or other such activities; however, he would not be able to take part in events sponsored by the University Interscholastic League (UIL) such as athletic competitions or band and choir contests.

  • What is the compulsory school age requirement?

A child who is age six as of September 1 of the current school year must be enrolled in school until his eighteenth birthday, unless he has graduated. 16. What about testing my child? Although the state of Texas does not require testing of private school students, many home school parents do give their children annual tests using nationally-normed achievement tests.

  • May my child go out in public during the day? What if someone questions him about why he is not in school?

Home schools in Texas are private schools. Home school parents are law-abiding citizens and should not feel the need to hide their children during the day. If someone asks you or your child why he is not in school, you should respond that you home educate and that you have already accomplished your work for the day or that you are on a school field trip. You should be aware that if your children are seen during public school hours you will generate questions. If your child is in public without you and your city has a daytime curfew, you could encounter difficulties.

  • What happens if my child wants to enter or re-enter public school?

School districts set the requirements for enrollment in their schools. This is a local decision–not one made by the state of Texas. You should check with the local school district concerning its policy regarding accepting unaccredited private school students.

  • What is required for graduation?

Home schools in Texas are private schools and not regulated by the state; therefore, just as with other private schools, home schools set their own graduation standards. There is no minimum age requirement for graduation.

  • How can my child receive a diploma?

When a student meets the requirements set by his school for graduation (see question #19), he may receive a diploma. Diplomas may be ordered from the Texas Home School Coalition Association and other sources.

  • What if I work?

Remember that home schools are private schools and there is no requirement for hours or the time when education must take place. The only requirement is that a written curriculum covering the basic areas (see question #3) must be pursued in a bona fide (not a sham) manner. Consequently, one could work and teach his child as well. While this would be difficult and take some discipline, it is certainly possible and legal.

  • Is there a recurring theme here?

The answer is “yes”! Home schools in Texas are private schools. Private schools in Texas are not regulated. Therefore, home schools in Texas are not regulated. Keep this thought central in your mind when dealing with those who want to regulate or restrict your freedom to teach your children.


child welfare reform, foster care abuse, cps, domestic violence, education, family, General, government, law, system failure
ALERT:: Collin & Dallas Counties Ignore Domestic Violence Outcries

August 16, 2008 at 12:29 am




(The comments below were made by a woman on Its Almost Tuesday’s main page, I copy/paste for you all to see)

I am going through almost exactly what Mary has gone through in the Collin County Court System. I feel for her and broke-down several times while reading about her story. I have been a victim of Domestic Violence to my husband, the abuser who has beat & battered me throughout our marriage. There are at least thirty (30) Police Incidents and i finally obtained a Protective Order that Collin County will not enforce because they say it is out of there jurisdiction and that I need to see the City of Dallas. Likewise, the City of Dallas says that it is out of there jurisdiction and that the constable of Collin County is the one to enforce these Protective Order Matters. Collin County says thay dont know what Dallas is talking about. I pay taxes to both. Neither one is helping me and my husband is continuing to take steps to follow-through on his threats to kill me. Something needs to be done, but I don’t know where to turn.


child welfare reform, foster care abuse, domestic violence, education, foster care, General, government, system failure
Sect Leader’s Daughter Tells Attorney Ad Litem to Step Aside
Legal Ethics
Posted Jun 23, 2008, 07:16 am CDT

By Debra Cassens Weiss

The daughter of polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs has told her attorney ad litem in an e-mail to step aside. She sent a copy of the missive to the Salt Lake Tribune.

The teen, 16-year-old Teresa Jeffs, told the newspaper in an interview that Texas lawyer Natalie Malonis is restricting her visits with the people who matter most in her life and has barred her from corresponding with her father, who has been jailed since 2006. The disagreement has created a rift with Malonis.

“The most help you will be to me now is for you to step aside and let me get a different lawyer that I feel like can help me,” Teresa Jeffs said in the e-mail.

Malonis has succeeded in getting a temporary order barring Teresa Jeffs from contact with Willie Jessop, a spokesman for the polygamous sect, the newspaper reports. Another hearing on the matter is scheduled for Tuesday.

Malonis told the paper she is trying to keep the girl free of outside influence. “Right now, that’s not happening,” Malonis said. “There is no question I am absolutely looking out for her. … What’s happening is really a shame because people who purport to care about her are really doing her a disservice.”

Texas law requires attorneys ad litem to represent their clients’ position in court, unless the clients are not acting in their own best interest, according to the story. Malonis has said in court papers that police believe Teresa Jeffs was spiritually married to an older man when she was 15.

child death, child welfare reform, foster care abuse, cps, domestic violence, education, family, foster care, General, government, system failure
Over 1300 online petitioners say judicial actions in FLDS case is deserving of impeachment

Click Here to view the 1385 Online Petition Signatures to Impeach Texas District Judge Barbara Walther Over FLDS Fiasco

Published by Daniel T. Weaver on Jun 01, 2008
Category: Government/Law
Region: United States of America
Target: State of Texas
Texas Judge Barbara Walther authorized the removal of more than 400 children from an FLDS compound in Texas and their placement in foster care.

Both an appellate court and the Texas Supreme Court have ruled that the children and parents must be reunified. Even now Judge Walther is blocking the reunification by attempting to get parents to sign agreements with Child Protective Services before they can be reunited with their children.

Barbara Walther’s actions constitute one of the greatest violation of constitutional rights in the State of Texas and she should be impeached and removed from office. This petition will be forwarded to Texas lawmakers after enough signatures are collected.

Signing this petition does not mean that you necessarily support the FLDS and their religious views.

(This petition was created by a third party who is not necessarily affiliated with nor is this petition the true reflection of the opinion of It’s Almost Tuesday – the views and opinions of this Petition is wholly its own, and independent of Its Almost Tuesday.  We are simply sharing the petition’s information for those who wish to sign it.)


Whereas Texas 51st District Judge Barbara Walther has violated the constitutional rights of more than 400 children and their parents of the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints Church (FLDS);

and whereas Judge Barbara Walther took an oath to defend and protect the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Texas and has violated that oath;

and whereas both an appellate court and the Texas Supreme Court have sided with the FLDS children and their parents against Judge Barbara Walther;

and whereas the actions of Judge Barbara Walther have resulted in a great financial cost to the State of Texas and its taxpayers;

and whereas Judge Barbara Walther’s actions constitute one of the greatest violations of constitutional rights in the history of the State of Texas;

and whereas Judge Barbara Walther should have known ahead of time that what she was doing was unconstitutional, since the Island Pond Raid in the State of Vermont in 1984 was almost identical, and there are other similar cases on record where judges refused to support unconstitutional raids by Child Protective Services;

and whereas Judge Barbara Walther has impeded the reunification of parents with their children, even after the Texas Supreme Court ruled that they should be reunified;

we ask that proceedings begin immediately for the impeachment of District Judge Barbara Walther of the State of Texas.

Click Here to Sign the petition

The Impeach Texas District Judge Barbara Walther Over FLDS Fiasco petition to State of Texas was written by Daniel T. Weaver and is hosted free of charge at GoPetition.

please promote this petition


child welfare reform, foster care abuse, cps, domestic violence, education, family, General, government, law
ACP Offers Freedom For Abuse Victims in Texas

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more about “Corpus Christi, TX | KRISTV.COM |Texa…“, posted with vodpod


I left my abuser…but he keeps coming after me… nobody was there to stop him…so I went back…

If I leave him, he’ll just come find me… so I might as well stay…”


I’m afraid to stay home alone… my ex might show up one day if he finds out where I am….”


Its been ten years and still I keep the shades closed on the windows, always wondering if he’s out there…”


Climbing out broken windows may be the only way to get to safety…

But now, the state of Texas wants to help keep victims of abuse safe once they do leave the abuse…by keeping residential addresses confidential & forwarding abuse victim’s mail to their safe location.

I don’t live in fear anymore…


I cleaned my house with the windows open for the first time in years …”

I’m free…. I finally feel like I’ve

gotten my life back…


Thank you ACP!


Under a new statewide program, Texans who are the victims of stalkers, sexual assault or family violence crimes can now make their home addresses confidential.

State Attorney General Gregg Abbott outlined the new program on Monday, which is designed to protect their privacy and help keep them safe.People who are eligible can sign up to have the Crime Victim Services Division of the Attorney General’s office designate a substitute address for them.




The division will receive the mail, process it, and then forward it to the participant’s actual address.

The substitute addresses can be used on voter and school registration cards, driver’s licenses and most government documents, including court records.

For more information about the Address Confidentiality Program or to learn more about the eligibility criteria, contact the program at ( 512 ) 936-1750 or ( 888 ) 832-2322.

You can also visit the agency’s web site at

This is a wonderful program I recommend for all 50 states – I was a member of this program in another state until I moved back to Texas where they did not have the program in place. Had this program been in place in Texas when my ex found, stalked and utlimately planned and assisted in abducting my son, I may have never lost my little boy.





Attorney General Abbott Announces Confidential Address Program For Crime Victims

Victims of family violence, stalking and sexual assault can register for anonymous address

AUSTIN – Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott today announced that family violence, stalking and sexual assault victims may be eligible to participate in a new, state-sponsored address confidentiality program. Eligible Texans can register for an anonymous address that will appear on voter and school registration cards, driver’s licenses, and most government documents, including court records.

The Attorney General’s Crime Victim Services Division will designate a substitute address for eligible victims; receive service of process and mail for the participants; and forward mail to participants’ actual address. During the 80th Legislative Session, Sen. Eddie Lucio authored legislation creating the Address Confidentiality Program (ACP), which authorizes the attorney general to provide this service to crime victims.

“Texas family violence, stalking and sexual assault victims can now obtain a confidential address that will help them protect their privacy and keep them secure,” Attorney General Abbott said. “We are grateful to the victim assistance organizations that partnered with us to ensure this program provides the meaningful protections intended by the Legislature.”

Applicants must meet with a local domestic violence shelter, sexual assault center, law enforcement, or prosecution staff member to discuss a safety plan and learn more about the enrollment process. To get contact information for local shelters, access the Texas Council on Family Violence Web site at or call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at (800) 799-SAFE. To contact local sexual assault centers, access the Texas Association Against Sexual Assault Web site at or the National Sexual Assault Hotline at (800) 656- HOPE. Meeting with a victim advocate is vital to this process and required by law.

Sheryl Cates, chief executive officer of the TCFV and the National Domestic Violence Hotline praised the new program: “The ACP is yet another valuable tool available to victims of family violence in protecting themselves from the perpetrators who abuse them. We are grateful to General Abbott and his staff for seeking input from the Texas Council on Family Violence and many other domestic violence service providers in the development of ACP guidelines.”

Annette Burrhus-Clay, executive director of TAASA, added: “Rape is a crime that removes control from a victim; this measure provides one additional avenue for restoring that control.

TAASA is proud to have worked with the Legislature, the Attorney General and other victim advocacy organizations to see this important program through to fruition and we’re hopeful that survivors of sexual violence, stalking and domestic violence will find this a helpful tool on their path to recovery.”



  relating to the creation of an address confidentiality program to
  assist victims of family violence, sexual assault, or stalking in
  maintaining confidential addresses.
         SECTION 1.  Chapter 56, Code of Criminal Procedure, is
  amended by adding Subchapter C to read as follows:
         Art. 56.81.  DEFINITIONS. In this subchapter:
               (1)  “Applicant” means a person who applies to
  participate in the program.
               (2)  “Family violence” has the meaning assigned by
  Section 71.004, Family Code.
               (3)  “Family violence shelter center” has the meaning
  assigned by Section 51.002, Human Resources Code.
               (4)  “Mail” means first class mail and any mail sent by
  a government agency. The term does not include a package,
  regardless of size or type of mailing.
               (5)  “Participant” means an applicant who is certified
  for participation in the program.
               (6)  “Program” means the address confidentiality
  program created under this subchapter.
         Art. 56.82.  ADDRESS CONFIDENTIALITY PROGRAM. (a)  The
  attorney general shall establish an address confidentiality
  program, as provided by this subchapter, to assist a victim of
  family violence or an offense under Section 22.011, 22.021, 25.02,
  or 42.072, Penal Code, in maintaining a confidential address.
         (b)  The attorney general shall:
               (1)  designate a substitute post office box address
  that a participant may use in place of the participant’s true
  residential, business, or school address;
               (2)  act as agent to receive service of process and mail
  on behalf of the participant; and
               (3)  forward to the participant mail received by the
  office of the attorney general on behalf of the participant.
         (c)  A summons, writ, notice, demand, or process may be
  served on the attorney general on behalf of the participant by
  delivery of two copies of the document to the office of the attorney
  general. The attorney general shall retain a copy of the summons,
  writ, notice, demand, or process and forward the original to the
  participant not later than the third day after the date of service
  on the attorney general.
         (d)  The attorney general shall make and retain a copy of the
  envelope in which certified mail is received on behalf of the
  be eligible to participate in the program, an applicant must:
               (1)  meet with a victim’s assistance counselor from a
  state or local agency or other entity designated by the attorney
  general under Article 56.92 and receive orientation information
  about the program;
               (2)  file an application for participation with the
  attorney general or a state or local agency or other entity
  designated by the attorney general under Article 56.92;
               (3)  designate the attorney general as agent to receive
  service of process and mail on behalf of the applicant; and
               (4)  live at a residential address, or relocate to a
  residential address, that is unknown to the person who committed or
  is alleged to have committed the family violence or an offense under
  Section 22.011, 22.021, 25.02, or 42.072, Penal Code.
         (b)  An application under Subsection (a)(2) must contain:
               (1)  a signed, sworn statement by the applicant stating
  that the applicant fears for the safety of the applicant, the
  applicant’s child, or another person in the applicant’s household
  because of a threat of immediate or future harm caused by the person
  who committed or is alleged to have committed the family violence or
  an offense under Section 22.011, 22.021, 25.02, or 42.072, Penal
               (2)  the applicant’s true residential address and, if
  applicable, the applicant’s business and school addresses; and
               (3)  a statement by the applicant of whether there is an
  existing court order or a pending court case for child support or
  child custody or visitation that involves the applicant and, if so,
  the name and address of:
                     (A)  the legal counsel of record; and
                     (B)  each parent involved in the court order or
  pending case.
         (c)  An application under Subsection (a)(2) must be
  completed by the applicant in person at the state or local agency or
  other entity with which the application is filed.  An applicant who
  knowingly or intentionally makes a false statement in an
  application under Subsection (a)(2) is subject to prosecution under
  Chapter 37, Penal Code.
         (d)  A state or local agency or other entity with which an
  application is filed under Subsection (a)(2) shall forward the
  application to the office of the attorney general.
         (e)  The attorney general by rule may establish additional
  eligibility requirements for participation in the program that are
  consistent with the purpose of the program as stated in Article
  56.82(a).  The attorney general may establish procedures for
  requiring an applicant, in appropriate circumstances, to submit
  with the application under Subsection (a)(2) independent
  documentary evidence of family violence or an offense under Section
  22.011, 22.021, 25.02, or 42.072, Penal Code, in the form of:
               (1)  an active or recently issued protective order;
               (2)  an incident report or other record maintained by a
  law enforcement agency or official;
               (3)  a statement of a physician or other health care
  provider regarding the applicant’s medical condition as a result of
  the family violence or offense; or
               (4)  a statement of a mental health professional, a
  member of the clergy, an attorney or other legal advocate, a trained
  staff member of a family violence center, or another professional
  who has assisted the applicant in addressing the effects of the
  family violence or offense.
         (f)  Any assistance or counseling provided by the attorney
  general or an employee or agent of the attorney general to an
  applicant does not constitute legal advice.
         Art. 56.84.  CERTIFICATION; EXPIRATION. (a)  The attorney
  general shall certify for participation in the program an applicant
  who satisfies the eligibility requirements under Article 56.83.
         (b)  A certification under this article expires on the third
  anniversary of the date of certification.
         Art. 56.85.  RENEWAL. To renew a certification under
  Article 56.84, a participant must satisfy the eligibility
  requirements under Article 56.83 as if the participant were
  originally applying for participation in the program.
         Art. 56.86.  INELIGIBILITY AND CANCELLATION. (a)  An
  applicant is ineligible for, and a participant may be excluded
  from, participation in the program if the applicant or participant
  knowingly makes a false statement on an application filed under
  Article 56.83(a)(2).
         (b)  A participant may be excluded from participation in the
  program if:
               (1)  mail forwarded to the participant by the attorney
  general is returned undeliverable on at least four occasions;
               (2)  the participant changes the participant’s true
  residential address as provided in the application filed under
  Article 56.83(a)(2) and does not notify the attorney general of the
  change at least 10 days before the date of the change; or
               (3)  the participant changes the participant’s name.
         Art. 56.87.  WITHDRAWAL. A participant may withdraw from
  the program by notifying the attorney general in writing of the
  (a)  Information relating to a participant:
               (1)  is confidential, except as provided by Article
  56.90; and
               (2)  may not be disclosed under Chapter 552, Government
         (b)  Except as provided by Article 56.82(d), the attorney
  general may not make a copy of any mail received by the office of the
  attorney general on behalf of the participant.
         (c)  The attorney general shall destroy all information
  relating to a participant on the third anniversary of the date
  participation in the program ends.
  (a)  Except as provided by Subsection (b), a state or local agency
  must accept the substitute post office box address designated by
  the attorney general if the substitute address is presented to the
  agency by a participant in place of the participant’s true
  residential, business, or school address.
         (b)  The attorney general by rule may permit an agency to
  require a participant to provide the participant’s true
  residential, business, or school address, if necessary for the
  agency to perform a duty or function that is imposed by law or
  administrative requirement.
         Art. 56.90.  EXCEPTIONS. The attorney general:
               (1)  shall disclose a participant’s true residential,
  business, or school address if:
                     (A)  requested by:
                           (i)  a law enforcement agency; or
                           (ii)  the Department of State Health
  Services or a local health authority for the purpose of making a
  notification described by Article 21.31, Section 54.033, Family
  Code, or Section 81.051, Health and Safety Code; or
                     (B)  required by court order; and
               (2)  may disclose a participant’s true residential,
  business, or school address if:
                     (A)  the participant consents to the disclosure;
                     (B)  the disclosure is necessary to administer the
         Art. 56.91.  LIABILITY. (a)  The attorney general or an
  agent or employee of the attorney general is immune from liability
  for any act or omission by the agent or employee in administering
  the program if the agent or employee was acting in good faith and in
  the course and scope of assigned responsibilities and duties.
         (b)  An agent or employee of the attorney general who does
  not act in good faith and in the course and scope of assigned
  responsibilities and duties in disclosing a participant’s true
  residential, business, or school address is subject to prosecution
  under Chapter 39, Penal Code.
         Art. 56.92.  PROGRAM ASSISTANCE. The attorney general
               (1)  identify state and local agencies and other
  entities, whether for-profit or nonprofit, that provide counseling
  and shelter services to victims of family violence; and
               (2)  require the identified agencies to provide access
  to the program, including making program information and
  application materials available and providing assistance in
  completing program applications.
         Art. 56.93.  RULES. The attorney general shall adopt rules
  to administer the program.
         SECTION 2.  Article 56.54, Code of Criminal Procedure, is
  amended by amending Subsection (c) and adding Subsection (l) to
  read as follows:
         (c)  Except as provided by Subsections (h), [and] (i), and
  (l), the compensation to victims of crime auxiliary fund may be used
  by the attorney general only for the payment of compensation to
  claimants or victims under this subchapter.
         (l)  The attorney general may use the compensation to victims
  of crime auxiliary fund to cover costs incurred by the attorney
  general in administering the address confidentiality program
  established under Subchapter C.
         SECTION 3.  Section 18.005(a), Election Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         (a)  Each original and supplemental list of registered
  voters must:
               (1)  contain the voter’s name, residence address or
  substitute post office box address, if required by Section 18.0051,
  date of birth, and registration number as provided by the statewide
  computerized voter registration list;
               (2)  be arranged alphabetically by voter name; and
               (3)  contain the notation required by Section 15.111[;
               [(4)  until Section 13.122(d) expires, identify each
  voter registered by mail for the first time who failed to provide a
  copy of a document described by Section 63.0101 establishing the
  voter’s identity at the time of registration].
         SECTION 4.  Subchapter A, Chapter 18, Election Code, is
  amended by adding Section 18.0051 to read as follows:
  original or supplemental list of registered voters must contain a
  voter’s substitute post office box address designated by the
  attorney general under Article 56.82(b), Code of Criminal
  Procedure, for use by the voter in place of the voter’s true
  residential, business, or school address if the voter is eligible
  for early voting by mail under Section 82.007 and has submitted an
  early voting ballot application as required by Section 84.0021.
         SECTION 5.  Chapter 82, Election Code, is amended by adding
  Section 82.007 to read as follows:
  PROGRAM. A qualified voter is eligible for early voting by mail if,
  at the time the voter’s early voting ballot application is
  submitted, the voter is certified for participation in the address
  confidentiality program administered by the attorney general under
  Chapter 56, Code of Criminal Procedure.
         SECTION 6.  Subchapter A, Chapter 84, Election Code, is
  amended by adding Section 84.0021 to read as follows:
  (a)  An early voting ballot application submitted by a qualified
  voter who is eligible for early voting by mail under Section 82.007
  must include:
               (1)  the applicant’s name and address at which the
  applicant is registered to vote;
               (2)  the substitute post office box address designated
  by the attorney general under Article 56.82(b), Code of Criminal
  Procedure, for use by the voter in place of the voter’s true
  residential, business, or school address; and
               (3)  an indication of each election for which the
  applicant is applying for a ballot.
         (b)  The information contained in an application under this
  section relating to the address at which the applicant is
  registered to vote is confidential, except that the information
  must be disclosed if:
               (1)  requested by a law enforcement agency; or
               (2)  required by court order.
         SECTION 7.  Chapter 221, Election Code, is amended by adding
  Section 221.018 to read as follows:
  INFORMATION. (a)  Notwithstanding Section 84.0021(b), the
  tribunal hearing an election contest may examine the information
  contained in an application under Section 84.0021 relating to the
  address at which the applicant is registered to vote.
         (b)  Information may be examined under this section only for
  the purpose of hearing an election contest.
         SECTION 8.  The attorney general shall establish the address
  confidentiality program and adopt rules to administer the program
  as required by Subchapter C, Chapter 56, Code of Criminal
  Procedure, as added by this Act, not later than June 1, 2008.
         SECTION 9.  This Act takes effect immediately if it receives
  a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, as
  provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution.  If this
  Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate effect, this

Act takes effect September 1, 2007.


For more information about the Address Confidentiality Program or to learn more about the eligibility criteria, contact the program at (512) 936-1750 or (888) 832-2322, or visit the agency’s Web site at


State (year of implementation) Statute
Arkansas (2005) Ark. Stat. Ann. 27-16-810
California (1998) Cal. Govt. Code §6206
Connecticut (2004)
Florida (1998) F.S.A. §741.403
Illinois (1999) (no funding) 750 ILCS 61/
Indiana (2001) IC §5-26.5-2
Maine (2002) 5 M.S.R.A. §90-B
Massachusetts (2001) M.G.L.A. 9A §2
Nebraska (2003) Neb. Rev. Stat. §42-1201 through 42-1210
Nevada (1997) N.R.S. §217.462
New Hampshire (2001) N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. §7:43
New Jersey (1998) N.J. Stat. Ann. §47:4-4
North Carolina (2002) N.C. Gen. Stat. §15C-1
Oklahoma (2002) 22 Okla. Stat. Ann. §60.14
Oregon (2006) 2005 Or. Laws, Chap. 821 (SB 850)
Pennsylvania (2005) 2004 Pa. Laws, Act 188
Rhode Island (1999) R.I. Gen Laws §17-28-3
Vermont (2000) 15 VSA §1152
Washington (1991) RCW §40.24.030





child death, child welfare reform, foster care abuse, cps, domestic violence, education, family, foster care, General, government, system failure

This ruling is an awesome show of the law and how it works.  CPS is rarely overturned.  In particular, to have the Third District Court of Appeals rule so specifically on the terms of what they can constitute “imminent danger” requiring the removal of a child, and also implementing the requirement to make every reasonable attempt to return the child to the home.

This is case law that I’m sure will be used throughout many cases in the future of CPS court.  This is a huge advancement for all families who have been wrongly separated by CPS who have not followed the law like they are now being forced to.  These children will surely find their way into history and law books to come and hopefully save the children of our future from suffering much the same fate.





child welfare reform, foster care abuse, cps, education, family, foster care, government, law, system failure

AUSTIN, Texas (KXAN) — The Third Court of Appeals has ruled that Child Protective Services did not have the right to remove children from the Yearning for Zion ranch last month.

The ruling comes as a result of a document filed by Texas RioGrande Legal Aid last month. The TRLA is the largest provider of legal aid in Texas, on behalf of 48 FLDS mothers that TRLA is representing in their child custody cases.

“The way that the courts have ignored the legal rights of these mothers is ridiculous,” said TRLA attorney Julie Balovich. “It was about time a court stood up and said that was has been happening to these families is wrong.”

In the decision, the Court ruled that CPS failed to provide any evidence that the children were in imminent danger and acted hastily in removing them from their families. According to the Court, “The existence of the FLDS belief system as described by the Department’s witnesses, by itself, does not put children of FLDS parents in physical danger.”

TRLA will be holding a press conference in front of the courthouse in San Angelo Thursday at 1:30 p.m.

child death, child welfare reform, foster care abuse, cps, domestic violence, education, family, foster care, General, government, law, system failure
CPS v. FLDS: Truth v. Lies: ItsAlmostTuesday v. Media- I CALL FOR A STRIKE

I am disgusted by CPS – again. I am disgusted by the Media – again. I miss my children… again…

So, the saga continues… FLDS, CPS, ElDorado, Media, Rocky, Bullwinkle…. hrrrrm?

My day started out a little emotional with this post as I read the Dallas Morning News Opinion Blog – where Sharon Grigsby posted CPS vs FLDS: 0 for 10 yesterday and i quote:

“The Deseret News and Grits for Breakfast, among others, continue to keep close tabs on those YFZ teens that CPS claims are pregnant. Some on our staff have said they aren’t interested in my continued posts on this topic. Perhaps some readers out there are: Today’s news from the Deseret News is that it turns out no 14-year old girls were found pregnant at the YFZ Ranch during the Great Eldorado…Full Story on The Dallas Morning News:

A lawyer for a 14-year-old girl that is on a list of so-called “disputed minors” said this morning she is not pregnant as Texas child welfare authorities have alleged. “My client does not have children. (She) is not pregnant. She’s the youngest on the list of disputed minors,” said Andrea Sloan.

“The department is communicating to the public that there are 14-year olds who are pregnant,” she said. Texas Child Protective Services caseworker Ashley Kennedy said that investigations were still ongoing.

The bombshell was dropped during the hearing involving Adeline Barlow, 38, the mother of a 10-year-old and the 14-year-old.

That led to quite a discussion when Grits for Breakfast replied as follows:

Posted by Gritsforbreakfast @ 6:29 PM Wed, May 21, 2008

Your observation that “Some on our staff have said they aren’t interested in my continued posts on this topic” confirms my sense that the MSM is less interested in focusing on information that’s not full of salacious accusations against weirdo polygamists. God forbid y’all actually report the truth instead of whatever phony accusation CPS ginned up that day.Pretty amazing that your colleagues would admit it, though. The facts on which they based their opinions were invalid, but they don’t want to revisit their conclusions. I’m asking myself “Why?”, but can’t come up with a single good reason offhand besides some sort of religious bigotry. What else could possibly explain journalists’ callous indifference to truth?

Which led to other comments on DMN Opinion Blog:

Posted by Shirlee @ 6:38 PM Wed, May 21, 2008

Amen! It is very demonstrative of the media’s duplicity that these “corrections” aren’t as widely snapped up and repeated as gospel as CPS’s lies all along, such as their assertion that they were investigating sexual abuse in boys too. That was spread like wildfire through the media, with the implication that the FLDS were guilty. This turned out to be, of course, a red herring to remove attention from their other atrocities. Thanks for having the integrity to point this out.


Posted by Kristi @ 7:31 PM Wed, May 21, 2008

Thank you for covering this. I have a friend that keeps saying I should quit yelling their rights have been violated and read some of the books out about them and learn more about their beliefs.

WHY? Their beliefs are irrelevant as far as I am concerned. I don’t have to agree with them or disagree with them – that doesn’t matter. What matters is that people are treated humanely, and that citizen’s rights be protected. REGARDLESS of who they sleep with, or what picture hangs in their room. Jeez.

Thanks for covering this. The mainstream media is nothing but a statist mouthpiece. THey aren’t reporting because all they can do is repeat what the govt. tells them. They are afraid of real investigative journalism.

So here’s my take on it – from the perspective of a parent who has lost her child to false allegations & CPS: First I’d like to thank GritsforBreakfast and DMN Opinion Sharon Grigsby for their guts, perseverance and dedication to this story.

Doesn’t it seem eerily like the OJ Simpson Murder trial? Where everyone tuned in, it was a news sensation who-done-it, bestseller, and yet – in the mix – people forgot about Nicole & Ron, the REAL PEOPLE who were brutally murdered in an act that was not from a movie script, but from domestic violence.

These are children. These are mothers.

These are people who do not live like “normal society” – and this is their lives.

In a letter from a former FLDS member, dan fischer, to the parents involved in these proceedings, one of the things he talks about is the way these families lived, and the way these women lived as mothers. They do not have television, friends, movies or dinners out, or clubs or dancing or even pictures hanging on their walls. They have their children. Their children have their mothers. These children, if they get an education, it is not like they would get in public school. It is a different lifestyle, belief, way of thinking and living. Is it wrong? Who’s to say? IT IS ALL THEY KNOW. To say that they will need psychological therapy is an understatement. These families are forever changed. The children are no longer innocent at all, secure, or stable. They are forever altered.

Imagine today, someone comes into your office, takes your computers, your pictures, your children, friends, families, etc., and says “EVERYTHING YOU ARE DOING IS NOT NORMAL AND YOU ARE GOING TO BE RIPPED APART AND IMPRISONED FOR IT” and you just thought that’s the way things were in life … you were behaving as “normal” and someone comes and rips it all to pieces – because we forget that ‘normal’ is a perspective….

You can’t imagine it – I know I can’t… tho’ I can try. Day to day routine & what you know is based on your experiences, surroundings, teachings, and perspective. Duh… right? Now – how does that tie into the law? How does that relate to the system?

There’s the debate. But wait a minute – the children…. aren’t they the MOST IMPORTANT PART OF ALL OF THIS? Remember the children are no longer protected by the sect and their ‘no television’ rules. They are thrown into “normal’ society – for the first time – So they get their first taste of ‘normalcy’ in a place where children are 11 times more likely to be abused than at their natural home? These are children being introduced to society In a place where anger and rage and social workers and doctors and lawyers and psychotropic medications and abuse and lies and faces change and confusion and more abuse and more rage and new foster mothers and new foster fathers and new schools and new kids and danger and fear and confusion fear confusion confusion…. COME ON THESE ARE CHILDREN!

I am a mother first and foremost, and an advocate for children & families. I fight against pedophiles, crooked CPS workers, and system failures within our government. BUT WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY DOING TO THESE CHILDREN?

As a Mother having gone through this CPS involvement and false allegation thing, I want to say this:

– I know that if I had the media reporting lies & making my case into a rumor-filled-gossip office-watercooler-coffee-break discussion, I probably wouldn’t be here typing this blog post right now. I’d be dead, because I would have committed suicide at least 10 times over from the pain and humiliation and suffering that I ALREADY HAD GOING ON added to that media cherry to the top of the rumor cake. No way. I wouldn’t have made it. I do not speak lightly when I say that. I would not be here. My heart goes out to the mothers and children.

As an Advocate-Paralegal who fights against pedophiles, child abusers, and government system failures – I say this:

Lets suppose a 14 year old gets married to an adult… is the sex still considered pedophilia? If a parent ‘consents’ to marry away the child to their sex partner can they essentially thwart the law? What if that marriage – which makes it legal – is forced …. in the name of ‘consent’ but the child never speaks up… or doesn’t know better..?

Child abuse is child abuse. A child has the right to live an abuse-free life. So then, let’s define abuse….Spanking on the butt? To some – yes. To others – no… Some say “Discipline all children with the rod or the child will be unruly” – Others say “Corporal punishment of any kind is abuse…”

Some say keeping these children apart from mainstream society without the ability to choose for themselves whether or not to watch TV or whether or not to go to public school, is abuse;While to others, its a NORMAL WAY OF LIFE.

Go to college v. get a job ? Dog v. cat ? Toilet paper – put it on the roll with the pull side up? Or down?

We could argue all day long as to who is living right or who is living wrong. We could argue all day about whether or not its abusive to live in a sect or abusive to allow no religious teachings in a family.

But we cannot argue truth vs. lie.

We cannot argue the difference between fact or fiction – perjury – telling the truth in the court of law v. falsifying evidence.





While everyone has an opinion, not everyone has a child.

Not everyone has a family or a family problem with CPS.

Not everyone has abuse issues in their lives, or conflicts to deal with, or a religious leader telling them one thing with a government telling them another with media saying something else with people giving opinions and everything they know being taken away, and not everyone understands what is involved in a case unless you go through it yourself.

It isn’t an easy thing to deal with when you live in mainstream society I CANNOT IMAGINE that happening to me if I lived in a removed, isolated, lifestyle like FLDS mothers, and I HAVE BEEN THROUGH IT – So if I can’t imagine it, knowing what I know, I KNOW there are most people out there who have no idea what they are talking about.

But everyone has an opinion. So, here’s mine –


Maybe then I wouldn’t have scars on my arm from my suicide attempts and the tears that fall when I post this – feeling the shame as I still write, admitting it, for the sake of children I don’t know.

If I had this kind of attention to my case, I might have back the years I lost, and the many more to come since my case caused me such despair because I WAS LIED ABOUT BY CPS TOO. Maybe I wouldn’t have lost everything I owned, friends of 20 years and my children.

Maybe my family members that I don’t see or speak to anymore would be over this weekend with my children who are not in my life anymore and we’d laugh together instead of yearning for my children & family back.

Maybe if I had someone to blog about me and my case when my son was forcibly removed and traumatized I wouldn’t have these nightmares about seeing him beaten & drugged in foster care, & the LIES BY CPS WORKERS and GAG ORDERS that made it okay to hurt my child and destroy me so a pedophile could get his revenge – finally – against me – for leaving him and trying to protect my child… REALLY protect my child….

That’s not news. That’s a life. That’s my life. My son’s life. That’s their life & their children’s lives in ElDorado. That’s the lives of your children AND mine, and unless you’ve been through this kind of horrible thing, you just may not understand.

I pray you never do understand -But for cryin’ out loud – tell the truth…. whether you’re reporting on it, or working on the case, or just talking about it to your neighbors.

If mainstream media entertainment “sells” more newspapers based on CPS LYING ABOUT THESE FAMILIES…. I URGE ALL OF YOU TO JOIN IN A STRIKE.




Please. For the sake of these families.

There’s no question about the integrity of truth v. lie ….

just like you can’t be ‘kinda pregnant’….

Because the swing of every pendulum brings with it potential adverse consequences, it is important to emphasize that in the area of child abuse, as with the investigation and prosecution of all crimes, the state is constrained by the substantive and procedural guarantees of the Constitution. The fact that the suspected crime may be heinous – whether it involves children or adults – does not provide cause for the state to ignore the rights of the accused or any other parties. Otherwise, serious injustices may result. Syl.Pt.3,WALLIS v. SPENCER, 202 F.3d 1126(9th Cir. 2000)

child custody, child death, child welfare reform, foster care abuse, cps, domestic violence, education, el dorado, Eldorado, family, foster care, General, government, law, legal, religion, system failure
FLDS parents complain of vague custody plans
0520 Polygamist Retreat_BW
Members of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints make their way towards the Tom Green County Courthouse in San Angelo, Texas for the first round of hearings regarding the family plans on Monday, May 19, 2008. (AP Photo/San Angelo Standard-Times, Brian Connelly)
Tuesday, 20 May 2008


SAN ANGELO, Texas — Children from a polygamist sect were the only subjects on the docket Monday at a west Texas courthouse where five judges began handling hundreds of hearings that attorneys for the children’s parents decried for their cookie-cutter approach.

State child welfare officials gave each of the more than 460 children in state custody the same template plan for parents to follow, and judges made few changes. But parents remained without answers to important questions, including whether a requirement that the children live in a “safe” environment means they can’t return to the Yearning For Zion Ranch.

Donna Guion, an attorney for the mother of a 6-year-old son of the sect’s jailed prophet, Warren Jeffs, complained the plans were so vague they would be impossible to satisfy and were contingent on psychological evaluations likely to take weeks more to complete.

“This plan is so vague and so broad that my client has no idea what she can do now,” Guion said of the boy’s mother.

Dozens of mothers in prairie dresses and fathers in button-down shirts, flanked by pro bono lawyers from the state’s most prestigious firms as well as Legal Aid, arrived at the Tom Green County courthouse hoping to learn how to regain custody of their children.

“What the parents are trying to find out here is what they need to do to get their children back, and there’s no clear answer to that,” said Rod Parker, spokesman for the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which runs the ranch in Eldorado.

The FLDS parents say they are being persecuted for their religion, which includes beliefs that polygamy brings glorification in heaven.

In one hearing, attorneys complained that the Book of Mormon was confiscated from some of the children at a foster facility.

“If they can openly admit they can take away the Book of Mormon from us today, it’ll be the Bible tomorrow, and it’s outrageous,” said FLDS elder Willie Jessop.

State Child Protective Services spokeswoman Marleigh Meisner said officials have not been able to confirm whether the members’ holy text was taken from them, but they have removed photos, sermons and books of Jeffs, who is a convicted sex offender.

The hearings in San Angelo, 40 miles north of the ranch, are scheduled to run for the next three weeks, and none of the judges would humor any discussion about whether the initial grounds for removing the children in a raid of the ranch last month were valid. It probably will be months before the cases are reviewed again in court.

The state also acknowledged Monday that two more sect members they listed as minors are actually adults. The state has made that mistake at least four times; child welfare officials have complained that church members have not cooperated with their efforts to determine ages and family relationships.

Texas child welfare authorities argued that all the children, ranging from newborns to teenagers, should be removed from the ranch because the sect pushes underage girls into marriage and sex and encourages boys to become future perpetrators.

Church members insist there was no abuse. They say the one-size-fits-all action plan devised by CPS doesn’t take into account specific marriage arrangements or living circumstances.

Some members of the renegade Mormon sect lived in a communal setting in large log houses they built themselves. Others lived as traditional nuclear families in their own housing on the ranch.

CPS spokeswoman Shari Pulliam said the plans look similar now but will be customized as officials get more information.

“It’s logical they all look the same. All the children were removed from the same address at the same time for the same reason,” she said. But “it’s an evolving plan.”

All the plans call for parenting classes, vocational training for the parents and require the parents to prove they can support their children. They also call for safe living environments, though they offer no specifics.

CPS supervisor Karrie Emerson said the parenting classes will be tailored to explain Texas laws regarding underage sex. “The goal isn’t to change any of their religious beliefs per se but just to educate them what might be a problem under Texas law,” she said.

CPS has said that reunification of the families by next April is the goal.

Jessop, however, said the state has made it impossible for parents comply with vague plans and to visit their children, many of whom are scattered to facilities up to 650 miles apart.

“Every parent is accused of being bad, and there’s no cure,” Jessop said.

The unwieldy custody case has been unusual from the beginning. All the children of the ranch were treated as if they belonged to a single household, so the chaotic initial hearing involved hundreds of attorneys for children and parents and broad allegations from the department about the risk of abuse.

So far, 168 mothers and 69 fathers have been identified in court documents; more than 100 other children had unknown parents as the hearings got under way. DNA samples have been taken, but the first results are at least two weeks away.

The children were removed from the ranch during an April 3 raid that began after someone called a domestic abuse hot line claiming to be a pregnant 16-year-old abused by a much older husband. The girl has never been found and authorities are investigating whether the calls were a hoax.

The FLDS is a renegade breakaway of the Mormon church, which renounced polygamy more than a century ago.

Sect leader Jeffs, who is revered as a prophet, has been sentenced to prison in Utah for being an accomplice to rape in arranging a marriage of a 14-year-old follower to her 19-year-old cousin. He is awaiting trial in Arizona, where he is charged as an accomplice with four counts each of incest and sexual conduct.

Court documents listed 10 children of Jeffs living at the ranch. If DNA tests confirm that any of the children are his, the children will be allowed to keep a photo, said Meisner, the CPS spokeswoman.