Using Hitler’s image to promote home education

I viewed recently on Youtube a short film made by home educators. I mentally counted the seconds until mention was made of Hitler. He duly made an appearance after a mere twenty seven seconds. Here is the film:

The ancient piece of nonsense is trotted out here,  that Hitler banned home education and that Sweden has introduced a law based upon the Nazi one prohibiting home education.  I have remarked before that there is something horribly tacky about using Hitler and the Holocaust to promote some hobby or favourite cause. Perhaps a look at the facts might show us why this business about Hitler banning home education is not true.

 In 1938 the Nazis passed a law about education, the Gesetz über die Schulpflicht im Deutschen Reich. This made school compulsory, but just like the 1944 Education Act in this country, it contained an exemption clause for those who wished to have their children educated at home; (1) Zum Besuch der Volksschule sind alle Kinder verpflichtet, soweit nicht für ihre Erziehung und Unterweisung in anderer Weise ausreichend gesorgt ist. Roughly translated, this means that children had to attend school unless their education and training was otherwise provided out of school.

I hope that this will bring to an end the idea that ‘Hitler banned home education’. There was very little home education in Germany, for  historical reasons.  It was not banned under Hitler and claims that it was are just a trick by home educators to associate laws regulating home education with the Nazis. Just to recap, Hitler did not ban home education in Germany and no law was ever passed by the Nazis to do so; anybody who says that this is the case is deliberately setting out to mislead those who know nothing of German history.


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