Based on the recommendation of a CPS-contracted psychologist, the judge in the April 30 hearing ruled that the Tutt family must submit to monthly, unannounced CPS visits; family counseling; and psychiatric evaluation of both parents by a CPS-approved psychiatrist. The judge also heard testimony from public school officials subpoenaed by the assistant district attorney. One teacher suggested the child diagnosed with special needs resulting from pre-birth exposure to drugs and alcohol should attend summer school because she was behind grade level academically.
The four children who have been returned to the Tutt family are still not allowed to return to being home schooled but must continue with their court-mandated public educations. There was no decision made in regard to the other children, who have not yet been returned. The judge said that she would decide on what was best for the next school year at a hearing in June.
In spite of the fact that the removal of the children was ruled unjustified, now that the state is involved the judge continues to make decisions based on what she determines is in the best interest of the children.
A THSC attorney representing the family is pursuing a writ of mandamus to an appellate court. The purpose of this action is to restore the family’s right to their own children based on the prior ruling that the initial removal of the children by CPS was unjustified. The court has thus far refused to provide the transcript of the decisive January hearing to the Tutts’ attorney, even though the law requires that an attorney representing a client be granted a transcript. The court clerk stated the judge must give permission for the Tutts’ attorney to receive the transcript, which would entail an additional hearing that would not be possible before July 18! In March the judge ruled that THSC could obtain a redacted transcript, but so far THSC has seen no action in compliance with that ruling.
Please continue to pray for the Tutts and for the attorneys representing them, and stay informed about this case.