Throughout their history, Germans have been strong proponents of the “common good,” and their attitude toward education is no exception.

So, when the Romeike family were persecuted for choosing to home school their children for religious reasons, it was completely understandable. And when the German government outlawed homeschooling, we can trust that their motives were simply a zealous desire to promote the common good.

In all seriousness, I think the following comment on the Zeit Online website is the most common argument against homeschooling in Germany:

Auch wenn Chancengleichheit in Deutschland bisher (wie in den meisten L?ndern) ein unerreichbares Ideal bleibt — die Schulpflicht hat viele Funktionen, unter anderem bewahrt sie Kinder zu einem gewissen Grad vor der Willk?r ihrer Eltern und stellt sicher, da? sie neben einer Grundausbildung auch mit anderen Lebensentw?rfen und Denkmodellen konfrontiert werden. Die Schulpflicht dient somit dem Wohl des Kindes. [Link to Google Translate]

This writer (a literature professor, no less) believes compulsory education (i.e., government control) serves the best interests of the child because it exposes children to those with different lifestyles and mindsets. You see? Common good through compulsion.

A court has granted the Romeike family asylum in the United States. I am not sure how they ended up in Memphis, although it could have been worse (e.g., Flint, Detroit, Ann Arbor).