A proposed policy update by the Mat-Su School Board would make it abundantly clear that parents have ultimate authority over the education of their children in public schools.
On Jan. 20, the board is scheduled to vote on a proposed update clarifying parental rights in education. It is four times longer than current policy and states in no uncertain terms that parents and guardians have the right to object and withdraw their child from any test, class, program or activity. It adds that parents have a right to be notified at least two weeks before their child engages in any activity that involves human reproduction or sexual matters – excluding sex-abuse awareness and dating violence courses, which are required by state law. In terms of curriculum, parents have the right to review any content. It also states that parents can remove children from school for religious holidays with no penalties.
This proposed update would be the first in nearly two years and would bring the school district more in line with state laws on parental rights.
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There was considerable confusion about parental rights, which came to light in April when the board was debating the use of several controversial literature textbooks in classrooms. With more than a thousand comments and emails pouring in from the public, board members saw the need to clarify the district’s understanding of parental rights and engagement.
- The school board is scheduled to vote on the proposed changes at the Jan. 20 meeting, The meeting begins at 6 p.m. in the Mat-Su Borough School District’s Central Office (501 N. Gulkana, Palmer).
- Click here for information on how to view the meeting online or to testify by phone or email.
- Click here to contact school board members.
- Click here to read the proposed update.