Christian preschool in California shut down for noncompliance, claims false allegations

Pastor David Hoffman addresses the crowd, protesting the Cal. Social Services’ shut down of Foothills Christian Church Preschool.

Foothills Christian Church Preschool in El Cajon, near San Diego, is battling the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) over the California mask mandate. This past month, the Christian school was forced to shut down when state inspectors determined the school was unsafe. However, parents and staff are pushing back against the state’s verdict.

The CDSS investigations began as far back as September 2021 after a parent complaint. School staff responded to the investigations appropriately and courteously, attempting to meet the demands of the licensing agencies. However, meeting the requests has been difficult. Tiffany McHugh, the preschool director, said, “Unfortunately, it’s really hard. We are going up against a lot of parents that don’t want their children to be masked.” 

The state returned in November 2021 and cleared the preschool of the alleged violations, granting a brief sigh of relief for both parents and staff. The senior pastor of Foothills Christian Church, David Hoffman, reported more than 11 visits from state officials investigating the school. Hoffman states that ultimately “what it boils down to is they were not happy with how many of our children did not have masks on.”

A routine visit in December 2021 spelled heartbreak for the staff, parents, and children of the school. Social Services returned to conduct a facility examination and unexpectedly ruled to shut down the school.

Pastor Hoffman pushed back, saying, “They couldn’t really find anything wrong except that not enough kids had masks on. I want to read this to you: ‘There were disinfectants, cleaning solutions, poisons and other items that posed a danger to children.’ I defy anybody to go into this building right now and find poisons.” Hoffman added that the alleged violation was based on a time when a teacher wiped down a desk with a Clorox wipe but forgot to lock the cabinet after returning the cleaning agent to its designated spot. Alongside the shutdown, the state prohibited preschool director McHugh from working in childcare in the future.

Republican State Senator Brian Jones, Mayor Bill Wells, local pastors, and families gathered on January 7th of this year to protest against the state’s ruling. Parent Derick Cardinal who was present at the time said  “it’s one of the safest schools around.” 

Live at Foothills Christian Church to discuss the state’s unjust and tyrannical closure of their preschool.

Posted by Jake from the Statist Farm on Friday, January 7, 2022

Foothills Christian Church Preschool continues to fight back against the allegations. Its appeal will take place on January 14.