Hi Folks — It’s Lenore from Free-Range Kids, where I get letters like this one with shocking regularity (check my blog and you’ll see a new one there right now!). CPS must do some good. I’m sure it has saved a lot of kids in danger. But it also has a lot of power, which sometimes it uses to threaten, or even destroy families. Parents who are confident in their kids, their community and their own parenting often allow their children to have some independence. They even — if you can believe this — allow them to play outside! For this, they are sometimes (too often!) hounded. – L.
Dear Lenore: A neighbor of mine called the Texas CPS (Child Protective Services) and the Police on my wife and I because we allow our children, ages 6 and 8, to play in the courtyard directly in front of our apartment. CPS has been investigating my family since April 4th 2012, it is now August 12 2012, and all they have come up with is the one report to Police about my 6-year-old being outside in front of his home. Now we are dealing with the courts in a “Negligent Supervision” case, which makes absolutely no sense because my child wasn’t hurt or asking anyone for help. I was outside with my son when the Police arrived, but the CPS caseworker insists that I take drug tests and parenting classes. People are not neighbors anymore, they are just @$$holes. – A Texas Dad