By: Krystle Crossman
The state of Connecticut is trying to pass a proposal that would require home-schooled students to undergo stricter monitoring if they have been diagnosed with behavioral or mental health issues. This is in light of the mass school shooting in 2012 at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. The panel that is bringing up the proposal feels that there was an oversight in how home-schooled students are monitored. They feel that these students should have to undergo the same requirements as public school students if they are still within the same district.
The Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) states that they will fight this proposal with full force. They feel that it is a proposal that is made out of fear and that thinking that violence in the schools is connected to home-schooled children is ridiculous. The HSLDA is currently made up of 83,000 members in the US and they are prepared to fight to have the proposal knocked down. Their main concern is that parents could end up being denied the opportunity to home-school if the board does not like the results of the testing that their child goes through. The proposal would make the mental health testing mandatory.
The proposal is expected to be brought forth for consideration within the next few days. The main points of it are that home-schooled children undergo an individualized education plan if they have severe mental health or behavioral challenges. Adam Lanza, the shooter in the Sandy Hook massacre had attended public school up until 10th grade. At that time his mother, who was a teacher at Sandy Hook, pulled him from school and had him home-schooled. He had severe mental health issues such as OCD, Asperger’s, and sensory-integration disorder. Most of his day was spent in the basement of his mother’s house obsessing over mass murders and violence. They did not find any medication or drugs in his system. The panel that created the proposal said that they had overlooked the issues with Lanza because he was home-schooled. Now they say that this testing for home-schooled students should be necessary to prevent tragedies like this from happening again.