The attack on homeschooling is not just something happening in California. In fact there are many states putting pressure on home educators all across the U.S. The problem is that we often get caught up only with what is happening in our surrounding areas, and we tend take note only of rulings that might affect us personally.
However, unity regardless of state lines is crucial, and the need to stay informed on current bills and laws all over the United States is imperative.
Take this Maryland bill for example.
HB 1798 Invasive Home Visits
The purpose of this bill as stated by the House is for the “Observation of Instruction and Reporting of Abuse and Neglect”.
The following excerpt , comes directly from said bill:
For the purpose of requiring the parent or guardian of a certain student to submit certain information to the county board of education before the student begins a home instruction program; requiring the parent or guardian of a student in a home instruction program to verify certain information provided to a county board at certain time; requiring a parent or guardian of a student in a home instruction program to send a certain notice to the county board of any changes to certain information within a certain period of time; requiring the parent or guardian of a student in a home instruction program to allow a representative of the county board to observe instruction of the home instruction program in a certain location and for a certain purpose a certain number of times each school year; requiring a representative of a county board to notify certain agencies, in a certain manner, if the representative has reason to believe a child has been subjected to abuse or neglect; requiring certain agencies that receive a certain report to notify a certain agency under certain circumstances; requiring a certain report made by a representative of a county board to include certain information in a report, if known; and generally relating to a home instruction program and county boards of education.
This bill, would allow a county representative to invade private homes “a certain number of times” each year, to observe instruction and to report on the child’s well-being. Furthermore, if said representative “has reason to believe” abuse or neglect, a report will be filed. The report and further investigation would be based on the county representative’s perception of abuse. Not based on actual abuse or neglect, not based on proof, not based on fact.
HB 1798 Has Nothing To Do With Home Instruction
Per the quoted text, the sole purpose of this bill is to look for abuse and neglect. Yet it is only aimed and homeschoolers.
Once again, homeschoolers face regulation, based solely on prejudice and ignorance.
While looking at the bill in it’s entirety (click here), you will see that actual home instruction is only mentioned on page 2, lines 26 to 28. The rest, however is focused on abuse and neglect.
Child abuse and neglect is serious, however, why do legislators seem to focus and point fingers at the homeschool community?
Why do the words “Home Instruction Program” and “Abuse and Neglect” appear on the title of HB 1798?
This bill, has nothing to do with home instruction, other than it’s aim to the homeschool community. We saw this type of finger pointing from government agencies and the media, in the recent Turpin Case.
Maryland Homeschoolers Come Out Victorious Against HB 1798
Maryland’s homeschool community, the Maryland Homeschool Association and HSLDA took a stand against this bill and reached out the delegates and sponsors of this bill.
In turn some of the delegates took the time to personally speak to concerned homeschoolers and eventually HB 1798 was withdrawn.
This goes to show that diligent involvement and action, can achieve positive results. Let’s stay informed, involved and united as a community. Support organizations like HSLDA who constantly fights for our freedoms as homeschoolers. #StandUP against bills like these.
 HB 1798
Check out the rest of this series, by clicking on the image below.