Child abuse victim was homeschooled - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Child abuse victim was homeschooled

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MADISON (WKOW) -- As we've reported this week, the Madison child abuse and torture victim was homeschooled, but reports have shown the teen has said she never learned much, leading to questions of whether her homeschooling was legal.

Records show that at one point, the girl attended Madison's Glendale Elementary, but since then she's been learning at home. When we interviewed Mike Vega, the man who saved her life, he says the girl indicated her family had no intention of educating her.

"I said why aren't you in school today? because it wasn't a school day, and she said I'm homeschooled but I'm never taught," Vega said.

According to court documents, officers noted only finding 3rd and 7th grade level workbooks at the home--far off from a 15-year-old's typical workload.

Area homeschooling advocates say parents don't have to follow any particular curriculum, and many don't necessarily work at a specific level.
    
But those who homeschool do have to follow guidelines from the Department of Public Instruction. The same guidelines private schools follow, teaching 875 hours of instruction a year in six basic subjects.
    
A Madison homeschool advocate and author, Alison McKee, says this story is not a homeschooling issue but a social services issue.
    
"We as good neighbors need to keep track of what's happening to the children in our neighborhood and we need to feel strong in reporting to social service agencies what's happening," says McKee.

Dane County officials received seven reports of abuse since 1997 involving the girl's family before she was taken into protective custody last week.

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