Lanza’s public school life, mental healthcare appointments, and more, were wise
to make this comment: “No direct line of
causation can be drawn from these to the
horrific mass murder at Sandy Hook” (p. 3;
emphasis in original). 2
Interestingly, however, research shows
no correlation between the degree of
government control of homeschooling and homeschool students’ academic
achievement scores. 3 Further, research
shows no correlation between how much
the State controls homeschooling and the
SAT scores of college-interested home-educated students. 4 That is, there is no
evidence that if the government controls
homeschooling more, the students will
then do better.
Finally, the “is/ought” question is raised
by the discussion of the Sandy Hook
killer and a connection, if any, with
homeschooling. Should the government
try to control—with more power and
authority than parents—an individual’s
life from birth to age eighteen, to try
to assure us that he will not do something bad? Whether he is State/public
schooled, private classroom schooled, or
homeschooled, should an American citizen’s life be ruled this way? Such a way of
operating would be in opposition to the
concepts of liberty that are foundational
to a free nation such as the United States.
This concept is anti-classical liberalism.
This way of thinking is anti-Biblical and,
therefore, not Christian.
The government’s rightful role is to
punish the evildoer and commend the
doer of good. 5 It is to commend parents
when they give time, attention, and care
to their children. It is not the State/gov-
ernment’s rightful place to try to manage
and control the physical body, mental
health, knowledge acquired, and values
believed of a seven- or thirteen-year-old
so that he will “likely” not harm anyone.
Such a way of living is called servitude to
the State or government domination, de-
spite the fact that those who promote it
call it making society a safer place.
The Sandy Hook shooter was not homeschooled. Even if he had been, there is no
empirical evidence available that State-controlled public schooling (or public
homebound instruction or public school
at home) is related to more positive things
than is free, private homeschooling.
Lastly, the government’s job is to
commend those who do good and pun-
ish those who harm others. The State’s
job is not to feed, clothe, give psycho-
logical therapy to, or teach, train, and
indoctrinate children and teenagers.
Research continues to suggest positive
things are associated with private parent-
led home-based education.
Brian D. Ray, Ph.D., is president of the
National Home Education Research Institute, a nonprofit research and education
organization. Dr. Ray often serves as an
expert witness in courts, testifies to legislatures, and is interviewed by the media.
Brian is married to Betsy and they have
eight children and four grandchildren.
Editor’s note: For more free homeschool
research like this, visit NHERI at www
1. Eagan, Sarah Healy; VosWinkel, Faith; Ford,
Julian D.; Lyddy, Christopher; Schwartz, Harold
I. Schwartz; & Spencer, Andrea. (2014, November 21). Shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary
School; Report of the office of the child advocate. Hartford, CT: State of Connecticut, Office
of the Child Advocate. Retrieved November 25,
2014 from http://www.ct.gov/oca/lib/oca/sandy
2. I have found nothing in the Eagan et al. government report that recommends more State control of homeschooling.
3. Ray, Brian D. (2010, February 3). Academic
achievement and demographic traits of homeschool students: A nationwide study. Academic
Leadership Journal, 8( 1). Retrieved March 10,
4. Ray, Brian D., & Eagleson, Bruce K. (2008, August 14). State regulation of homeschooling and
homeschoolers’ SAT scores. Journal of Academic
Leadership, 6( 3).
5. 1 Peter 2: 14.
The State’s job is
not to feed, clothe
. . . teach, train,