In light of recent school shootings, walk-outs to protest the handling of sexual harassment, and an upcoming lawsuit by a student who was drugged and gang-raped and then asked by officials to leave school until talk of the rape “blew over” – you might think that California’s government has enough on its hands, just trying to keep kids in our public schools safe.
But you’d be wrong. Or, at least, you’d be mistaken to assume busy-body California Assembly legislators would see it that way. The recently introduced Assembly Bills 2756 and 2926 are cases in point.
This first, AB 2756, requires fire marshals to perform in-home inspections of home-schoolers every year, implying that somehow home-educators are less fire-safe than other individuals. This is, of course, egregiously discriminatory on its face. But wait. The second one is even worse!
With AB 2926, Assembly Member Susan Eggman proposes forming an appointed committee to “investigate” homeschooling. The “instruction” committee would subsequently share its findings so that the California legislature might consider how best to regulate those families.
Because there isn’t anything a bureaucrat loves more than a new regulation! And these particular bureaucrats are already doing such a fine job of regulating our public schools that roughly half of California public school students surveyed reported experiencing bullying.
But sure, Assembly members, appoint a new committee to study the tiny demographic of California home educators while ignoring the existing, disgraceful challenges in our public schools. It’s always preferably to point out the splinter in someone else’s eye than to address the log in your own.
According to 2016 Census data, California now ranks 44th in the union for pre-K through 12th grade education. That’s out of fifty states.
In contrast, home educated students typically score 15 to 30 percentile points better than their public school peers. This result is completely independent of whether the home-schooling parent is a certified teacher, and unrelated to the degree of state control and regulation.
Of course, this annoys teachers unions, so they likely are quite happy about the new legislation. The NEA, said in their 2014-15 Resolutions, “The National Education Association believes that home schooling programs based on parental choice cannot provide the student with a comprehensive education experience.”
Note they seem to stand entirely against parental choice – because what other types of home education are there? This may be a more telling position than we’d like to admit, frankly.
Why would they fear home educators? As Kevin D. Williamson wrote in the National Review, “Home-schoolers represent the only authentically radical social movement in the United States (Occupy Wall Street was a fashion statement) and so they must be suppressed … “
It’s time for parents across California and the U.S. to take seriously the threats of governmental overreaches, like AB 2926 and others.
Parents, even if you don’t home school, sending officials into the homes of those who do is a waste of your money and of their energies.
And think about where this may end.
We already have mandatory vaccines in California. With the current anti-religious climate, perhaps the bureaucrats would insist all religious items, including Bibles, be removed from private homes. Would they make all homes gun-free zones? Maybe your family eats too much sugar, so the government would impose candy restrictions in your home.
Now is the right time for you to get involved and send the message to Sacramento that government encroachment must end, especially when government ineptitude is fully evident!
And for those readers in other states, take notice, for as California goes, so goes the nation. You’re next, and your own nosy big-government-wolves are pacing outside, threatening to blow down your doors.
In a nation that honors freedom, the government does not belong in our private affairs, and home education is one such environment. California AB 2926 represents the government at its worst, grabbing for any shred of power over the citizen, with absolutely no reason to do so and every argument to invest its time and resources otherwise.
Let California’s government fix all that’s wrong in our public schools – the poor scholastic performance, sexual abuse problems, and safety issues – before trying to micro-manage private citizens who are successfully overseeing their children’s education outside of government and union control.