Federal “Family Engagement” Plans
The U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services have issued a draft policy statement calling for “family engagement” and “including” parents as “partners” in the education and rearing of their children.
In an op-ed in the Deseret News, our president, Connor Boyack, highlighted a few specific concerns of this policy proposal, including:
The policy statement in question refers to the importance of Parent Training Information Centers and calls on schools to “conduct periodic home visits.” Noting that the “health and mental health” of parents plays a factor in “parenting and children’s outcomes,” the federal bureaucracy calls on government to “promot(e) their wellness alongside their children’s.” Even worse, the feds are calling for a detailed database containing reports of “family engagement,” including assessments of the relationships between teachers and families.
State law in Utah makes clear that “a student’s parent or guardian is the primary person responsible for the education of the student, and the state is in a secondary and supportive role to the parent or guardian.”
It is important that state legislators protect parental rights; increasing federal encroachment threatens the autonomy of Utah families and the natural rights of parents in their stewardship over their children. You can encourage them to do so by using our lookup tool to find who represents you, and contact them to express your concerns.