Hawley to introduce ‘Parents’ Bill of Rights’ to counter ‘woke bureaucrats’ taking over schools – Fox News

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FIRST ON FOX: Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., will introduce a bill to defend parents’ rights in their children’s education, Fox News has learned

“America has long recognized the right of parents to direct their children’s education but we are now seeing a concerted effort by the Left to shut parents out,” Hawley said in a draft statement, obtained by Fox News, on the forthcoming bill. “Whether it’s Joe Biden’s Justice Department attempting to classify parents as ‘domestic terrorists’ or activists funded by dark money who seek to quietly introduce critical race theory into school curricula, education has taken a back seat to radical politics in many schools and parents are taking notice.

“It’s time to give control back to parents, not woke bureaucrats, and empower them to start a new era of openness in education,” Hawley added.

HAWLEY: PARENTS’ BILL OF RIGHTS IS NEEDED TO COMBAT LEFT’S INDOCTRINATION OF SCHOOLS

A one-pager explaining the bill lays out the problem and presents the Parents’ Bill of Rights Act as the solution.

Josh Hawley in a Senate hearing. (Photo by Susan Walsh - Pool/Getty Images)

Josh Hawley in a Senate hearing. (Photo by Susan Walsh – Pool/Getty Images) (Susan Walsh/Getty Images)

The document notes that “parental rights, particularly in education, are increasingly under attack.” It quotes Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, who said, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.” 

It cited the Department of Justice’s memo urging the FBI to investigate threats to school board meetings, which came shortly after an infamous letter comparing concerned parents to domestic terrorists. The organization behind the letter had coordinated with the White House and the DOJ before sending it.

“All across the country, American parents have been mocked, bullied, and belittled by bureaucrats and school board members who think they know better,” the document notes. “When it comes to education, parental engagement is not the problem. It’s the solution.”

The forthcoming legislation will lay out eight rights parents should have regarding their children’s education, and it will empower parents to sue schools that do not protect these rights. A pattern of such violations in a particular jurisdiction will trigger major reductions in federal education funding under the bill.

VIRGINIA SCHOOL DISTRICTS DENY TEACHING CRITICAL RACE THEORY EVEN IN THE FACE OF EVIDENCE

The Parents’ Bill of Rights will set forth these rights:

  1. The right to know what their minor child is being taught in school, including, but not limited to, curricula, books, and other instructional materials.
  2. The right to information on who is teaching their minor child, including guest lecturers and outside presenters.
  3. The right to information on individuals and organizations receiving school contracts and funding.
  4. The right to visit the school and check in on their minor child during school hours.
  5. The right to all school records, medical or otherwise, concerning their minor child.
  6. The right to information about the collection and transmission of their minor child’s data.
  7. The right to have sufficient accountability and transparency regarding school boards.
  8. The right to know about situations affecting their minor child’s safety in school.

The bill will require that “school board meetings pertaining to curricula, safety, and other student issues shall be held in public and allow for public comments.”

Parents and community members attend a Loudoun County School Board meeting.

Parents and community members attend a Loudoun County School Board meeting. (REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein)

ARIZONA SCHOOL BOARD PRESIDENT KEPT SENSITIVE PERSONAL INFORMATION ON PROTESTING PARENTS, DOCUMENTS SUGGEST

The COVID-19 pandemic sparked a renewed interest among parents when it comes to their children’s education. Parents became outraged at what many saw as an overly long delay in returning to in-person learning and at COVID-19 restrictions. As children learned over Zoom, parents got a glimpse into the lessons – and this access often alarmed them.

Parents have spoken up at school boards across the country, protesting COVID-19 restrictions and certain measures pushed in the name of “equity” such as transgender policies or critical race theory — a framework that involves deconstructing aspects of society to discover systemic racism beneath the surface. 

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Explosive school board meetings in the Virginia counties of Fairfax and Loudoun have drawn nationwide attention, but the parents’ rights movement has grown across the country, often facing stiff opposition. One school board president in Arizona reportedly had access to a Google Drive with sensitive personal information on parents who spoke out at school board meetings. 

Opponents of critical race theory protest outside of the Loudoun County School Board headquarters, in Ashburn, Virginia, June 22, 2021. REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein

Opponents of critical race theory protest outside of the Loudoun County School Board headquarters, in Ashburn, Virginia, June 22, 2021. REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein (REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein)