The Fire Inspection Bill has been causing quite a stir. This is one of the two most recent attacks on homeschooling in the state of California.
It’s sting, is two-fold.
Part 1: Fire Inspections
Essentially, the bill states that any building, used as a public or private school should be required to meet certain fire safety criteria. The criteria includes a minimum number of marked emergency exits, fire extinguishing equipment, fire alarm systems, posted instructions regarding the storage, handling and disposal of combustible or explosive materials, installation and maintenance of items such as safety bars, grill or grates, and more! 
These regulations, would not simply apply to any private homeschool setting (your home), but would also apply to “auxiliary buildings”. Meaning other locations your kids might frequent while homeschooling.
We often school while visiting friends and relatives. We school at a local parks, libraries and community centers. We even school while on road trips, and are known to school at Panera or Starbucks from time to time.
Would some, or all of these alternate locations have to comply with fire safety rules?Furthermore, the inspection of private residences, would take place at least once per year, without a warrant, reasonable cause or consent. #StepUP Click To Tweet
The Truth Behind The Fire Inspections
Per the authors of this bill, it’s purpose is to ensure the safety of children in the event of an emergency.
However the truth behind this bill, is that having regular ‘fire inspections’ would give officials the opportunity to enter private homes unannounced, and look for signs of neglect, or wrongful treatment of homeschooled children.
This is a reaction to the Turpin Case in Perris, California.
Said fire inspections would clearly violate the privacy of our homes, and because of it’s true intent (to look for signs of neglect and/or mistreatment), would unjustly single out homeschoolers as potential child abusers.
The intent of these inspections is to protect homeschooled children from possible abuse. However there is no evidence homeschooled children are more likely to be abused than public school children. To make this point we simply need to look at cases like John Manly or Mark Berndt, where regular inspections, government oversight and educator screening failed to protect over 100 children.
Part 2: Published a List of Private Schools
Currently, the state of California requires homeschools to file an annual private school affidavit (PSA). The purpose is to meet compulsory education law, which requires children between the ages of 6 and 18 to attend a public day school.
The data collected is for the intended use of State and federal agencies “that provide programs and services to children and families in California and for other reporting needs.” 
The Problem with a Published List
The required PSA, contains information such as names, addresses, grade level and subject of study, and nature of study of the private school. Under AB 2756, the California Department of Education will be required to annually publish this information to the public.
The contents of the list (our children’s names and personal information), could then be exploited by state and private institutions.
Can you see the threat to our children’s safety in this bill?
How can you step up and take action?
- The Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) has put together an article with actionable steps you can take against AB 2756. You can access it here.
- Share this information with the homeschool community, as well as with friends, family and neighbors who are willing to stand for our homeschool freedoms.
- Contact your state legislators, even if you do not reside in the state of California. Similar bills could come and affect your state. Make your voice heard today.
- Stay up to date with homeschool law. The only way to fight bills like this one is by staying informed.
- Support organizations like HSLDA, CHEA of California and Family Protection Ministries. These organizations fight daily to protect our homeschool freedoms.
- Reach out to the authors of AB 2756 Jose Medina @AsmJoseMedina, Susan Eggman @AsmSusanEggman, and Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher @LorenaSGonzalez via Twitter, and make your position known.
UPDATE: As I wrote this article, thousands of homeschoolers across the state of California took action, and as a result part of the requirements of AB 2756 have been recently withdrawn, however there is still work to be done here. Step up and contact your state legislators today.
Check out the rest of this series, by clicking the image below.