A bill that would expand recognition of the rights of parents when it comes to how their child is treated in public schools is set for a hearing on Friday, March 22, at 8 a.m. in the House Education Committee. The hearing will entail public testimony.

Rep. Ben Carpenter (R-Nikiski)

Sponsored by Rep. Ben Carpenter (R-Nikiski), the House Bill 382 lays out the rights of both parents and teachers, but strongly emphasizes that parents have a fundamental right to direct the education of their children.

According to a statement from Carpenter, his bill would increase parental participation in their children’s education and allows parents access to school curriculum, budgets, and school boards, while also giving teachers more discretion in establishing and enforcing rules for their classrooms.

Additionally, the bill would require that all public schools be operated by academic policy committees that include parents.

“Alaska’s charter public schools, which are operated by academic policy committees comprised of parents, teachers, and school employees, are the best in the nation,” Carpenter’s statement notes. “Academic policy committees hire the school principal and employees, supervise the employees, and supervise the academic operation of the school.”

The bill also empowers parents to review curriculum, books, and all instructional materials, to meet with each teacher of the child, to review the budget, to address the school board, to withdraw children from activities or programs, and to provide consent for medical examinations.

With regard to student privacy and protection, HB 382 narrowly specifies who, and under what circumstances, someone who is not a parent or guardian can access the student’s records. It also protects them by requiring that every school’s written safety program include procedures to address the physical safety and privacy of students in locker rooms and bathrooms by requiring a student to use only facilities designed for members of the student’s biological sex.

In addition to other provisions, the bill requires local government-run schools to abide by the following stipulations:

(1) Notify parents if the state lowers or reconfigures the state’s academic standards.

(2) Allow parents to meet with each teacher of the child, in person or by video conference, at least twice each school year.

(3) Allow parents to review the budget, including all revenue and expenditures, of the child’s school.

(4) Provide to parents information about all schools, including charter schools, in which the child may enroll and options for enrolling in or transferring to another school in the child’s school district or another school district in the state.

(5) Notify parents if a school employee or contractor (A) acts to change the child’s gender markers, pronouns, or preferred name; (B) allows the child to change the child’s sex-based accommodations, including locker rooms or bathrooms; or (C) treats, addresses, or advises regarding (i) bullying, including cyberbullying, of the child; (ii) the child’s mental health and any suicidal ideation or instance of self-harm; (iii) a specific threat to the safety of the child; (iv) the possession or use of drugs and other controlled substances by the child; or an eating disorder of the child.

(6) Allow parents to withdraw the child from an activity, class, or program required by the state for a religious holiday as defined by the parent.

(7) Notify parents before a medical examination or screening is performed on the child and allow parents to withhold consent for or be present during the examination or screening.

Read the full bill here.


— To testify on the bill, call (907) 563-9085 (Anchorage), (907) 586-9085 (Juneau) or (844) 586-9085 (Statewide). Testifiers should call about 15 minutes before the 8 a.m. hearing and ask to testify on HB 382.

— Click here for more information on giving public testimony before the Alaska Legislature.

— To send written testimony on the bill, email

Click here to support Alaska Watchman reporting.

Bill to strengthen parental rights in Alaska schools set for March 22 public hearing

Joel Davidson
Joel is Editor-in-Chief of the Alaska Watchman. Joel is an award winning journalist and has been reporting for over 24 years, He is a proud father of 8 children, and lives in Palmer, Alaska.


  • DaveMaxwell says:

    This looks to be good on the surface. With our consistent acceptance of holding no one accountable for the wickedness that has saturated these institutions, I’m adamant in my rejection of this idea or any other ideas to work with this crap! No funding period! Kill this garbage full stop! No more! End of road! Rot! Mr carpenter, ms hughes, dunleavy, do I need to make it clearer? Enough!

  • Penny Ayers says:

    Taking a stand for parents and educators who don’t care for the way schools are going these days. As a former educator I shudder at what is happening in schools these days.,Keep up the good fight.

  • jon says:

    We need total separation of church and state. Bringing god into schools in nonsense.

    • DaveMaxwell says:

      News flash for Jon the oblivious. The God you rightly fear has already been tossed from your sacred institution! The repackaged replacement god has been in charge and it appears to anyone looking that you haven’t been offering enough scheckles as the results are pathetic! Come on Jon you can give more!

    • Elizabeth Henry says:

      Are you posting on the wrong article? The bill says nothing about God. The bill returns parent autonomy and involvement that need to be there.

      • Proud Alaskan says:

        Jon’s just afraid, having the parents and God in charge. I’m in charge of raising my kids not some woke school system. Like my mother used to say, while you’re in my house I make the rules.

  • Bob Logan says:

    We homeschooled. That’s the big fix.

  • Friend of Humanity says:

    Just learned of the website, “My Faith Votes” because Dan Scavino was pointing people to a petition there.
    Petition: “Stand With Parents” at