Child advocacy group condemns Nebraska’s LB 1027, warns of risks to homeschooled children


[Washington, D.C.] – The Coalition for Responsible Home Education (CRHE), the leading national nonprofit advocating for homeschooled children, condemns Nebraska’s proposed legislation, LB 1027. If enacted, the bill would introduce unnecessary changes to the state’s homeschool enrollment process, potentially fostering a neglectful attitude towards homeschooling, and raising concerns about the well-being and education of homeschooled children.

The bill’s key points of concern are as follows:

Changes to the Enrollment Process

LB 1027 introduces unnecessary changes to the enrollment process, potentially encouraging a neglectful attitude towards homeschooling.

Removal of Safeguards Against Educational Neglect

LB 1027 eliminates any possibility for school districts or state services to identify and address cases of educational neglect within homeschooling.

Empowerment of Abusers

LB 1027 makes it possible for abusers to unilaterally make educational choices for their children without the input of the co-parent, raising concerns about the safety and well-being of homeschooled children in potentially abusive situations.

Removal of Competency Requirement

LB 1027 removes the stipulation that home educators must be competent to teach, potentially compromising the quality of education provided to homeschooled children.

“The Nebraska Department of Education is facing severe understaffing in handling homeschool enrollments. Instead of addressing this issue by increasing resources, special interest groups are advocating to abandon the process altogether. This is a classic example of under-resourcing a government office and then using its inefficiency as an argument to eliminate the office and its duties,” said CRHE government relations director Samantha Field.

Proponents of the bill promote the false narrative that homeschooled children outperform their peers. However, the research used to support this claim has been widely discredited as methodologically unsound. Credible research on homeschool achievement paints a less bright picture: for example, multiple studies point to the existence of the so-called “math gap,” finding that homeschooled students perform worse in mathematics than their conventionally schooled peers. Although additional research is needed, large-scale studies find that homeschooled students are more likely to report being behind grade level than publicly schooled peers, and that four-year university attendance among homeschool alumni is very low.

Nebraska has multiple documented cases of educational neglect and physical abuse in homeschool settings, such as the case of 13-year-old Cassandra B. in Lancaster County. The teenager was abused by her homeschooling mother, and the state later prevented the mother from homeschooling her other daughter once Cassandra’s abuse came to light. Cases such as this one illustrate the importance of state oversight to address and prevent such abuse and neglect.

“We urge Nebraska lawmakers to consider the negative impact LB 1027 would have on the state’s homeschooled children,” said Field. “Any legislation impacting homeschooled children should prioritize their safety, well-being, and educational quality.”

The Coalition for Responsible Home Education empowers homeschooled children by educating the public and advocating for child-centered, evidence-based policy and practices for families and professionals.


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