Parental rights are critically important to navigating the public school system
Navigating the public school system today has become a complex and politically charged game, and many parents feel helpless in the face of a colossal educational bureaucracy. Now more than ever, it is essential that parents know their rights.
Since the 1920s, the United States Supreme Court has ruled that parents have the right to direct the education of their children. In doing so, the Court pointed out that “The child is not the mere creature of the state; those who nurture it and direct its destiny have the right, coupled with high duty, to recognize it and prepare it for further obligations. (emphasis added).
Yet today, unelected bureaucrats craft policies that deliberately undermine parental rights.
The Biden administration’s proposed changes to Title IX, for example, not only allow schools to indoctrinate children about sex and gender issues without parental consent, but encourage schools to hide critical information about children (including gender transitions or other sensitive materials) to their own Parents.
Independent Women’s Voice made it easy for citizens to engage with lawmakers on this issue before it became law. Until September 12, anyone can submit a comment let the Department of Education know that they will not accept the proposed settlement.
Fifteen states (WV, KS, MI, TX, UT, AZ, CO, NV, VA, OK, ID, WY, FL, MT and GA) have state laws that protect parental rights, most including education as an explicit parental right. Some, like Arizonahave stricter laws that guarantee the right to see programs, protect a child’s records, and give parents legal recourse if their rights are violated.
Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin relied on the Commonwealth Parental Rights Act when he issued the Executive Decree which asserted a parent’s right to decide whether or not their child would wear a mask at school.
One of the most critical issues in the world of parental rights is the right to opt out, which exists under federal law. Amendment relating to the protection of students’ rights (PPRA), and in 34 states and the District of Columbia. The PPRA legally allows parents to opt out of the intrusive surveys that many schools require of students. State laws require schools to notify parents when sex ed classes will be held and allow parents to legally withdraw their children.
One of the weaknesses of state opt-out laws on the books today is that they often only apply to formal sex-ed programs, but many schools have reclassified controversial lessons about sex and gender as part of their “anti-bullying” programs, to avoid parental rejection.
Others integrate teachings on gender ideology into science courses, including those on “inclusive biology”, which replaces words like mother with “gestational parent” and men with “people with testicles”.
While it can be difficult to get schools to drop these classes, opt-out laws are a way to protect children from the harm and confusion they cause. Where parents are not permitted to abstain from certain lessons, parents should monitor and request information about the lessons taught to their children and the materials and books used in the classroom and seek opportunities to get involved in the lesson. their child’s school, such as attending field trips, visiting the classroom, and fostering a relationship with the classroom teacher. Resources exist to educate and equip parents to exercise their right and high duty to direct the education of their child.
Want to know more about parental rights? Independent Women’s Network hosted a live chat followed by a Q&A with Parental Rights Foundation President Will Estrada, during which he provided critical insight into what parental rights are and how to exercise them.