As a statewide organization, MiCHN has had the privilege of serving thousands of wonderful homeschooling parents throughout the years—parents who love and care for their children and have made great sacrifices to teach and train their children in a positive, encouraging environment.
When parents fail to guard and protect their children, it is a painful reminder of the fallen world in which we live. All parents, as well as homeschooling parents and leaders, must be alert to abuse or neglect in order to protect those who cannot protect themselves.
MiCHN provides encouragement and help for parents who choose to homeschool. We provide information, resources, and advice regarding home education and family life. Under no circumstances would MiCHN want our homeschool freedoms to shield child abuse or domestic violence. Many families in Michigan have chosen the home education option as a way to protect their children from physical and/or sexual abuse their children have experienced in the public schools where they have been victimized by teachers, school staff or other students.
We believe parents should be encouaged to find the educational approach that works best for their child, and we encourage parents to be fully involved in the education of their own child. Children thrive in the loving, nuturing environment of parental care and oversight. The Gen 2 Survey revealed that students that are homeschooled are 257% less likely to be sexually abused than those in public schools. There is no documented evidence that shows homeschoolers are at any greater risk for abuse if they live in a low-regulation homeschooling state than if they live in one with much regulation. There is no evidence that putting more educational restrictions on loving, law-abiding families will reduce child abuse in the state. More careful reporting and follow-up on known instances of child abuse and neglect, however, will.
What to Do
Laws that address child abuse and neglect, as well as domestic violence, are in place. First-hand information regarding child abuse or neglect should be reported immediately to the appropriate civil authorities.
If you believe a child is being sexually abused, call the police. If you believe a child is at risk of imminent harm, call 911.
It is with much appreciation that MiCHN includes the following links provided by Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA). These resources help identify child abuse and neglect and offer helpful information and hope.
What is considered child abuse according to the federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act and how can you prevent it?
How can you identify sexual abuse and what age-appropriate information should you share with your children?
How can you pro-actively prevent sexual abuse? How can you protect someone who has experienced abuse?
If You Suspect Child Abuse
If you suspect child abuse or neglect, how can you follow up on your concerns?
Learn how to protect your child from abuse. What can you do if you find yourself, your child, or another family’s child in an abusive situation?
Definitions of Child Abuse and Domestic Violence in Michigan
Visit the following website for a description of child abuse and domestic violence with additional information on mandatory reporters, confidential records, and false reporting.
Focus on the Family
Focus on the Family offers valuable resources for families in crisis. Visit Focus on the Family or call their Help Center counselors at 1-855-771-HELP (4357), Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-10 p.m. Eastern Time.
Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline
Call 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453) and press 1 or visit Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline or Help for Kids. Although counselors do not report abuse, they can assist you with resources in your local area.