Homeschool Bill Drops Teacher Certification, But ...
by Mike Smith • April 19, 2018
Assembly Bill 2926—which aims at rewriting California’s homeschool laws—has been amended and pulled from a committee hearing. But there is still reason for homeschool families to be concerned about their freedoms.
Thanks to families sharing their concerns, AB 2926 author Susan Eggman has stricken two onerous provisions from the bill. It no longer includes requirements for health and safety inspections and the certification of homeschool teachers.
However, the revised AB 2926 still calls for the formation of a new committee to study homeschooling in order to recommend additional regulations.
The proposed committee would look at minimum requirements for homeschool instructors and standards for curriculum.
The bill was scheduled to be heard by the Assembly Education Committee on April 25. We have learned it has been removed from the committee’s calendar, but not withdrawn.
Steps Moving Forward
HSLDA remains opposed to the bill. We joined homeschoolers in protesting vigorously against the teacher certification and safety requirement, pointing out that they were unreasonable and unconstitutional—and the new requirements are equally objectionable.
The fact is that California does not need to study homeschooling. It is doing just as well or better than it was in 2008 when now-Governor Jerry Brown and then-Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger stated in a legal brief that homeschooling was a good thing and appropriately recognized under the private school exemption.
What has happened since 2008? Nothing except the Turpin case, that precipitated the filing of this bill and Assembly Bill 2756. Both bills are designed to regulate homeschooling because of this outlier case involving severe allegations of abuse by homeschooling parents.
But the premise that increased regulation of homeschooling will prevent such tragedies is a false one. It makes no sense to punish the vast majority of parents who lawfully choose homeschooling as the best education option for their children. Regulation is not warranted.
Another Bill to Oppose
The Assembly Education Committee is scheduled to take up AB 2756 on April 25 at 1:30 p.m. This is the bill that would require parents to declare the nature of their private school when filing the annual affidavit.
If you are a homeschooler living in California, please contact your Assembly member with your thoughts. You can find the names of the committee members here. If your Assembly member is on the committee, call him or her. If not, call the chairman’s office and voice your opposition AB 2756.
Please let them know, in your own words: “There is no justification for more regulation of homeschoolers, and taking up these bills will be a waste of legislative time and taxpayer money.”
And thank you for your support of homeschooling.