Five Months and Counting, State Maintains Control of Children

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.


  1. Sherian says

    Still praying for then Tutt’s. This is atrocious! The children were not taken out of the home for educational neglect. Although they may be behind Mes Tutt did not have them in their care long enough to get them caught up. Some children learn slower and some learn faster. I’ve seen that hundreds of times teaching a over the years in school and home school environments. This judge is abusing her power and hurting these children more than they could have been by their mom. This is the thanks she gets for fostering and adopting? No wonder more don’t want to so that. May The Lord protect those children who are still not home.

  2. Jim Loose says

    Question: What underpins this injustice?

    Answer: Psychobabble.

    Situation: As long as the pseudo-scientific musings (neither provable nor refutable within a meaningful timeframe) of so-called experts in pyschology and sociology are accepted in these cases … it is guaranteed that these tragedies will contine.

    Solution: State (politely, calmly … but resolutely) that the emperor has no clothes. Challenge the methods and, thus, conclusions of the “experts” whose musings provide judicial figleaves for these terrible injustices.

  3. says

    For those who have never fostered or adopted children, it would be helpful in understanding this case to know that when children have been removed from their biological home and placed in foster care, they are often already behind academically because of the dysfunction of their home situation. In the foster care system, they often fall farther behind in school, partly because they are so traumatized and sometimes moved often, complicated by the fact that they are often heavily medicated when entering “the system”.

    When we adopted our two boys from CPS at ages 10 and 13, they were both years behind academically, had huge gaps in their education, and were medicated. It took us years of concentrated effort through homeschooling to catch them up, give them a desire to learn, diagnose and treat their learning differences, and get them off all the medications “the system” felt they needed to cope with their situation. You cannot catch these kids up quickly when they are so traumatized and come from such dysfunction. You have to remember that there are dramatic reasons, often generational, that they were removed from their biological home in the first place.

    I am convinced that if we had kept our boys in the public school system, they would have failed miserably. Our younger son is quite bright, but was so heavily medicated and traumatized that he was labeled “special needs” and was in special ed classes, falling farther and farther behind. Whether or not the biological home was a horrible place, it is still traumatic for a child to be “yanked” out of the only home they’ve ever known and they often don’t want to leave their family, even when it is hurtful to them.

    What is happening to the Tutt family is indeed a travesty and a testimony of the brokenness of the system to help the children it is there to help.

  4. Bonnie A Strub says

    As CASA for a sibling group of CPS children in 2012-13, we saw one young lady failing miserably in school. She was lost because of many gaps in her knowledge (caused by much school time missed over the course of several years due to her difficult family situation). My husband and I advocated strongly for what we knew to be a very effective (self-paced with guidance) GED program in our town. Bless the judge who listened, even though he was skeptical. Not only did she earn her GED, but her boyfriend went to classes with her and earned his. Doors began to open for them and their confidence levels raised accordingly. They are now on their journey of life as a couple, beginning to raise their own son and are determined to give him a better start in life than they had. We believe the chances are good that they will.:) We still hope her older brother will turn from a life of crime. The situation was not a total success, although we tried just as hard with both… Maybe some day he’ll hit bottom and wake up. He knows we’re still (now unofficially) available anytime he wants to bounce thoughts off of us.