[Watch prior coverage in the player above.]
UPPER SANDUSKY, Ohio (WJW) — The superintendent of Upper Sandusky Exempted Village Schools, where a neo-Nazi-themed home-schooling curriculum is allegedly being taught, said the district “vehemently condemns any such resources.”
Eric Landversicht, schools superintendent, shared a letter with the FOX 8 I-Team that he sent out to parents and the community on Monday. The letter deals with allegations made in online reports claiming an Upper Sandusky couple is running a messaging app group connecting other parents in Nazi-based home-schooling.
“The allegations are egregious and the district vehemently condemns any such resources,” Landversicht wrote in the letter.
The couple go by the online name the Saxons. Reports state the couple is using the Dissident Homeschool channel on Telegram to disseminate the material.
“I first learned of these allegations last week,” Landversicht wrote. “Parents are responsible for choosing the curriculum and course of study; the parents’ chosen curriculum is not sponsored or endorsed by the district.”
According to the Ohio Department of Education, families that choose to home-school must notify the student’s district of residence of their intent to home-school the student. The parents must provide 900 hours of instruction per year, notify the superintendent annually and provide an assessment of the student’s work.
The I-Team asked Landversicht for any documents the parents provided the district regarding annual assessments or curriculum. This was the response we received:
In terms of your records request your request is denied to the extent it seeks documents and records that are protected from release in accordance with state and/or federal law. For instance, any records containing either the education records or the non-directory, personally identifiable information of students are not subject to release. Any record that ‘directly relates’ to a student is considered the educational record of that student and is therefore confidential. 34 C.F.R. § 99.3. Id. This protection also pertains to information that, alone or in combination, is linked or linkable to a specific student that would allow a reasonable person in the school community, who does not have personal knowledge of the relevant circumstances, to identify the student with reasonable certainty. See 20 U.S.C. 1232g (FERPA); R.C. 3319.321(B).”Upper Sandusky Exempted Village Schools Superintendent Eric Landversicht
A spokesperson for the Ohio Department of Education said officials are aware of the reports on the Upper Sandusky Nazi-based home-schooling and are “actively reviewing compliance with statutory and regulatory requirements.”
“I am outraged and saddened,” said Stephanie K. Siddens, interim superintendent of public instruction for the Ohio Department of Education.
“There is absolutely no place for hate-filled, divisive and hurtful instruction in Ohio’s schools, including our state’s home-schooling community. I emphatically and categorically denounce the racist, antisemitic and fascist ideology and materials being circulated as reported in recent media stories. Each day, educators, school leaders and family members work to make Ohio’s school communities, including our home school settings, places where students are encouraged, motivated and inspired through positive, inclusive and caring behavior.”