Last week, two very different conversations happened about one incident on two Facebook groups: 13 victims, ages 2 to 29, kept shackled in foul Perris home by parents, officials say.
The headline actually explains it pretty well. A couple has 13 kids whom they didn’t feed and kept shackled in their rooms. (Except when they were renewing their vows in Vegas, I guess.) The very last sentence of the article reads:
[The children’s grandparents] said their grandchildren are home-schooled.
Democratic Assemblyman Jose Medina, who represents the city of Perris, says there should be greater accountability for private home schools.
Medina says he’ll introduce legislation aimed at adding inspections.
One idea is requiring a once-a-year walkthrough of such schools by officials. He’s been talking with the community’s superintendent and the state superintendent of schools.
Of course, some California lawmakers were just waiting for the words “abuse” and “homeschool” to end up in the same sentence. Richard Pan, the immoral liar who brought us SB277, has wanted to go after homeschoolers for some time now. Fortunately, homeschoolers are a pretty well organized bunch, and seem to be ready to fight.
However, there are some people who are all too eager to hand over their rights to the state. One woman in a group argued that homeschools should have to submit to yearly inspections and that adults in the home should have to go through background checks. She didn’t see how these are gross invasions of privacy. She shared an op-ed piece from the Los Angeles Times that included this statistic:
In a 2014 study of child torture, Barbara Knox, a pediatrician at the University of Wisconsin, found that 47% of school-age victims had been withdrawn from school for homeschooling and an additional 29% had never been enrolled.
Apparently, people who want to regulate homeschooling use this study as evidence that there is a correlation between homeschooling and abuse. However, if you read the study… no such correlation is explored. The study’s purpose was to define what constituted torture, nothing more. The sample size? 28 kids.
There are about 2.3 million American children who are homeschooled. There were 17 homeschooled children in the study.
Ron Reynolds, executive director of the California Association of Private School Organizations, “questioned how it’s possible to prevent parents who home-school their children from injuring their kids in the privacy of their own houses.”
That’s a great question! First, though, answer me this: how is it possible to prevent parents of ANY children from injuring their kids in the privacy of their own houses?
I went to private school. I literally begged a CPS social worker not to send me home. She didn’t listen. But that was 30 years ago. Sadly, it is still happening today – authorities are ignoring literal cries for help.
And while we’re talking about preventing abuse in homeschooling situations, it might be a good idea to talk about preventing abuse in public and private schooling situations. Abuse like:
- L.A. Unified did not protect students from sexual abuse at El Sereno Elementary School, lawsuit claims
- Schools failing to protect students from sexual abuse by school personnel, federal report says
- FOX19 Investigates: Lawsuit accuses former special ed teacher of “torture”
(Note: If you Google “special ed teacher abuse”, you get 7,320,000 results.)
Homeschool Freedom published a quickly written article. The author notes:
In 2016, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (Administration for Children & Families) released a report on known factors related to abuse and child neglect.
According to this government report, there are a few demographic groups who are known to be at a higher risk for abuse than the rest of the populace. Home educators were not included in this list. There is no known predisposition for abuse among those who choose to home educate their children.
Let me reiterate: There is no known predisposition for abuse among those who choose to home educate their children.
The Child Welfare Information Gateway published Child Abuse and Neglect
Fatalities 2015: Statistics and Interventions. Homeschooling is not mentioned. In fact, this article provides the following statistics:
Three-quarters (74.8 percent) of child fatalities in FFY 2015 involved children younger than 3 years, and children younger than 1 year accounted for 49.4 percent of all fatalities.
These fatalities have nothing to do with homeschooling.
California lawmakers are going to use the Turpin family to try to infringe upon parental rights. Too many children left schools for homeschools after SB277. The legislature couldn’t get SB18 off the ground, so they needed to find a backdoor to insert the state into children’s lives. California readers: Remain vigilant! This is a fight you need to win.
(Disclaimer: I do not homeschool. My kids go to private school. I have a lot of friends who homeschool, though, and SB277 has made me hyper-aware of infringements on parental rights.)