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Why Privately Homeschool

WHY PRIVATELY HOMESCHOOL

Why do our members choose to privately homeschool? This is a persistent question that arises especially when people are considering the option of utilizing a charter school versus privately homeschooling.  A quick analogy will help with understanding the charter school system.  At a CHEA (www.cheaofca.org) convention, a speaker put it this way.

Imagine if one day you went to fellowship with your church and one of the elders came up to speak.  He proceeded to tell you that the church, in exchange for financial assistance, had decided to outsource the children’s ministry to the state of California.  The only caveat, he said, was that we could NOT teach the kids about Jesus during the time of fellowship.  The elders felt that this was an acceptable compromise considering the amount of financial assistance that they were receiving.  You can always teach your children about Jesus, before or after our fellowship time together.

While this may sound ludicrous to Christians, this is, in essence, “the idea of a charter school”.  Let’s take a look at some of the facts. We encourage you to click the links at the bottom of this page for more information. 

What is a Charter School?

A Charter School is a public school at home.  

Why Can't I Use a Charter School and Offer a Christian Education?

It is against the law.  The California law prohibits religious instruction in all public schools, including charter schools: no “sectarian or denominational doctrine [shall] be taught, or instruction thereon be permitted, directly or indirectly” in public schools. (California Constitution, Article IX, Section 8)

Children in charter schools are public school students. Charter schools are funded by taxpayer monies and, according to the California Constitution, all publicly funded schools must be under the “exclusive control of the officers of the public schools.”  Charter schools are prohibited by law from purchasing religious materials, and they are prohibited from allowing religious materials to be used in their programs at all even if those materials are purchased by parents or others. 

But My Education Specialist Said It Was Ok.

Some Charter School Administrators and/or Education Specialist (ES) will suggest that the parent just NOT report any religious material being used, and not have their children make any references to religious doctrine, Scripture, or Christ in any assignments being turned in to their Education Specialist (ES).  So instead of reporting to the State that you are using "A Beka (a Christian Publisher) math", the ES will just write "2nd grade math" on the official form.  It is the ES and parent that has to lie when reporting the religious material because, as we have seen above, it is against the law.

But I Told my ES What I Was Doing isn't that enough?

Again the ES and parent have to lie when reporting the religious material to use the program.  What does this teach children? It teaches them to lie. (Luke 17:1-2) It teaches them a utilitarian mindset–that the ends justify the means.  It teaches them to keep quiet about their belief in God and His Word and their hope of salvation in Jesus Christ when it suits their financial interests and convenience.  On the other hand, using secular materials based on a worldview that isn’t biblical teaches children to compartmentalize their life and to be dualistic in their worldview–to believe that God’s Word does not speak to every area of life.

In his “Preface to the Holy Bible,” Noah Webster wrote, “The scriptures were intended by God to be the guide of human reason.” Biblical teaching is not merely supplemental, rather, it is essential and foundational.

What is The California Healthy Youth Act (AB 329, Weber)

Every Charter School in California, including virtual charter schools and independent study programs administered by Charter Schools, must comply with the California Healthy Youth Act in the 2019-2020 school year.

California Healthy Youth Act (CA Education Code Sections 51930-51939) 
Frequently Asked Questions 

What is different about the new law?  

In addition to requiring that students receive comprehensive sexual health education at least twice—(at least)
once in middle school and (at least) once in high school—the California Healthy Youth Act includes new language
about adolescent relationship abuse and sex trafficking and reinforces a focus on healthy attitudes, healthy
behaviors, and healthy relationships. It also strengthened previous requirements that instruction and materials be
appropriate for students of all sexual orientations and genders and ensures that sexual health education does not
promote outdated gender norms. The law also updated the existing HIV prevention education mandate to reflect
the developments made in our understanding of and ability to treat and prevent HIV over the last 20 years.  

What are the baseline requirements for sexual health education and HIV prevention education? 

All instruction in all grades (including elementary) must be age-appropriate, medically accurate, and appropriate
for students with disabilities, students who are English language learners, and for students of all races, ethnic and
cultural backgrounds, genders, and sexual orientations. Instruction may not promote religious doctrine.
Instruction must affirmatively recognize different sexual orientations, and be inclusive of same-sex relationships
when providing examples of couples or relationships. It must also teach about gender, gender expression, gender
identity, and explore the harm of negative gender stereotypes.  
Comprehensive sexual health education must encourage students to communicate with their parents or other
trusted adults, and must provide students with the knowledge and skills to develop healthy relationships and
make healthy decisions about sexuality.

What are the additional content requirements for grades 7-12? 

 Instruction provided in grades 7-12, in addition to meeting the baseline requirements above, must include all of 
the following content:
* Information on the nature and transmission of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs);
* Information about all FDA-approved methods of reducing the risk of transmission of HIV and other STIs,
including antiretroviral treatment, and information about treatment of HIV and STIs; Discussion about social views of HIV and AIDS, emphasizing that all people are at some risk of contracting
HIV and that the only way to know one’s HIV status is by being tested;
* Information about accessing resources for sexual and reproductive health care and assistance with sexual
assault and intimate partner violence, as well as students’ legal rights to access these resources;
* Information about the effectiveness and safety of all FDA-approved contraceptive methods in preventing
pregnancy (including emergency contraception);
* Information that abstinence is the only certain way to prevent unintended pregnancy and HIV and other
STIs; information about value of delaying sexual activity must be included and must be accompanied by
information about other methods for preventing pregnancy and STIs;
* Information about pregnancy, including 1) the importance of prenatal care; 2) all legally available
pregnancy outcomes, including parenting, adoption, and abortion; and 3) California’s newborn safe
surrender law;
* Information about sexual harassment, sexual assault, adolescent relationship abuse, intimate partner
violence, and sex trafficking.

Does the law allow abstinence-only education? 

“Abstinence-only” sex education, which offers abstinence as the only option for preventing STIs and unintended
pregnancy, is not permitted in California public schools.  

The California Sexual Health Education Roundtable is convened by:  
ACLU of Northern California, California Latinas for Reproductive Justice, and Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California

Conclusion

Every Christian parent being lured to a charter school by “free” services and money must seriously consider and understand the long-term consequences of his or her decision. Not only can we affect the worldview of our children, but we can also have an adverse impact on those who are attempting to gain full freedom in the teaching of God’s Word for their homeschool.

DCHEA stands firm in its decision that all members must subscribe to a Biblical statement of faith and privately homeschool their children, denying government assistance for education.  We do not want the public education system to gain a foothold in the teaching of our children and hope to enjoy the freedom of Christ-centered home education for years to come.  This decision is not about exclusion, as the secular world would emphasize; it is about the inclusion of the body of Christ to freely use the gifts that we have been given by the Holy Spirit for the benefit of all, without the encroachment or oversight of secular authorities. “To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” (1 Cor. 12:7)

  1. HSLDA, The Problem with Home-based Charter Schools
  2. CHEA,” Considering homeschooling?

“Exposing A Trojan Horse” was produced by the National Alliance of Christian Home Education Leadership. It gives further insight into the charter school program.