Preliminary Data on Homeschool Child Fatalities
Our preliminary research suggests that homeschooled children are at a greater risk of dying from child abuse than are traditionally schooled children. This preliminary finding is based on an analysis of the cases in our Homeschooling’s Invisible Children (HIC) database and on national government reports on child maltreatment. When we compare the rate of child abuse fatalities among homeschooled families to the rate of child abuse fatalities overall, we see a higher rate of death due to abuse or neglect among homeschooled students than we do among children of the same age overall.
Homeschooling’s Invisible Children (HIC) is a searchable, public online database that documents cases of child abuse and neglect in homeschool environments. HIC is a project of the Coalition for Responsible Home Education (CRHE) and aligns with its mission and vision.
The purpose of HIC is to demonstrate the need for increased legal oversight of homeschooling, where since the 1980s the lack of protections for homeschooled children has led to some horrifying consequences. While homeschooling can be beneficial when practiced by responsible home educators, it also offers abusive caregivers a powerful tool to conceal and escalate their abuse, resulting in exceedingly harmful or fatal outcomes for children. The stories catalogued here represent some of the most extreme cases of child abuse that are known to occur. CRHE believes that some basic, common-sense policy solutions would prevent many of these harms and protect homeschooled children from falling through the cracks.
Warning: This site’s content includes mention of severe child abuse, torture, and untimely death and contains pictures of children who died under such conditions.