A growing trend in America has been reducing parents to little more than a bystander in a child’s life and educational career. And thankfully, it could soon be torn down, thanks to the introduction of a newly proposed bill in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The measure, known as H.R 5, or the Parents Bill of Rights Act, is a direct response to what far too many parents have been seeing in their children’s schools and educational facilities. If you don’t have children or haven’t been unfortunate to hear about any of this, suffice it to say that parents have been shut out of the educational process in far too many school districts.
Instead of letting the parent 1) know what their child is learning and 2) have a say in that, schools have kept parents in the dark about what their kiddos are learning. And then, should parents find out and not be happy about it or just have questions, some have gone to rather extreme lengths to punish those parents, suing them or even recommending that child services get involved. (And no, I’m not kidding.)
To be sure, it’s a frightening time to be a parent.
Thankfully, Republican lawmakers have noticed this trend and are implementing plans to stop it.
The Parents Bill of Rights Act is a major part of that.
It was introduced last week by GOP Representative Julia Letlow from Louisiana. But she is not alone; 106 other congressional members joined her to cosponsor the bill.
According to the bill and Speaker of the House, Kevin McCarthy, above all, it and its five pillars demand transparency from America’s public schools.
As McCarthy accurately said, as parents, our children are our whole world. Just about everything we do and say is for them. And yet, somehow, America’s educational system has cut us out.
McCarthy explained that this fact became clear, thanks largely to the COVID-19 pandemic when students were sent home and forced to learn at home and online for months on end. While this was difficult for all parties involved, it offered parents a peek into what was really being taught in their children’s classrooms.
And unfortunately, far too many of us didn’t like what we saw.
We learned that ideologies like critical race theory, gender identity, and more were being pushed on our kids. And all without our knowledge and say so.
And as I mentioned before, we got into trouble once we started questioning those things.
Therefore, the point of this bill is to ensure that from here on out, parents see and know what our kids are learning and have a right to question that.
As McCarthy said in a recent speech and wrote in a comment on his website, “The Parents Bill of Rights… is built on five pillars: The right to know what’s being taught in your schools and actually see it. The right to be heard and not sued for asking. The right to see your school budgets and to understand how they’re spending the money. The right to protect your child’s privacy and for the teacher not to be the parent. The parent is always the parent. And the right to be updated on any violent activity at school.”
McCarthy correctly pointed out that education should always be “the great equalizer.” It doesn’t matter your background, race, religion, or wealth. Our schools should be where none of that comes into play, where we are given equal opportunities and educational skills.
But that won’t happen if schools allow certain ideologies to take over and indoctrinate our youth into thinking one way or another. And it certainly won’t happen if parents are kept in the dark about what their children are learning.
Furthermore, this is clearly an issue that parents care about. Just ask ousted and former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe. He told constituents that parents shouldn’t have a say in education, and he lost. His opponent – and the new Virginia governor – ran on the opposite idea.
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