Thursday, May 04, 2006

Who's in charge?

A federal lawsuit was filed last week by parents in Lexington, MA. At the center of the controversy is the question...
Do parents or public schools have the final say in deciding what morals, values,
and principles should be taught to children, and at what age should those lessons take place?
We had a similar court case come through the Ninth Circuit Court last year. In that unaminmous court ruling they found that (PDF)

there is no fundamental right of parents to be the exclusive provider of information regarding sexual matters to their children, either independent of their right to direct the upbringing and education of their children or encompassed by it. We also hold that parents have no due process or privacy right to override the determinations of public schools as to the information to which their children will be exposed while enrolled as students. Finally, we hold that the defendants' actions were rationally related to a legitimate state purpose.

The ruling in MA could be different but I have my doubts. The state is continually setting it self up as the final authority in all matters of education. And although they pretend to want the parents involvement it is clearly on the state's terms.

In light of that ruling, I proposed legislation that would require the state to read parents their rights upon enrollment of their child in school. Similar to when an arrest is made and they are read their "Miranda" rights. So far that legislation has yet to see the light of day, (SPUNK-PAC has yet to be formed) but I'm hoping that the idea will eventually catch on. It could go something like this:


Parent or legal guardian; As you enroll your child in our government system of state indoctrination we are required to inform you of your rights...

You have the right to remain silent. Do you understand?

Everything you say and do will be ignored anyway. So don't waste your breath. Do you understand?

You have the right to an attorney. But don't waste your money either. Most judges are on our side. They know how they got elected or appointed. Long live the NEA! Do you understand?

You have no right to due process or privacy. Just bake cookies (no nuts please!) and attend the PTO meetings and we'll get along just fine. Do you understand?

You have no right to object to any material we present to your child. Everything we teach is pursuant to legitimate educational as well as health and welfare interests of the state. Do you understand?

We will use the full power of the court to establish that the interests of the state are more important than your interest as a parent. All at tax payer expense. (That means you.) Do you understand?

We realize that it may seem awkward to give up control of your child's education. But think about how many more hours in the day you will now be free to pursue your own interests. More importantly, the state is now free teach your child exactly what he needs to do to be a good worker in the global economy. Congratulations! You have just been liberated from your primary obligation as a parent. Go in peace.

Spunky is giving away a Benz Microscope and Apologia Biology Set this week. Click Here to get the details.

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