Friday, November 25, 2005

Parents rights in schools

A reader writes that the dicta in Fields v. Palmdale School District implies:
1) that parents' fundamental right to control the upbringing of their children "does not extend beyond the threshold of the school door,"

2) that a public school has the right to provide its students with "whatever information it wishes to provide, sexual or otherwise."

3) that parens patriae (the country as parent) can be substituted for parents' rights

4) that "there is no fundamental right of parents to be the exclusive provider of information regarding sexual matters to their children" and that "parents have no due process or privacy right to override the determinations of public schools as to the information to which their children will be exposed."

5) that if a child feels uncomfortable with the school's discussion of sex, the school will provide "a therapist for further psychological help."

6) that the fundamental right to direct the upbringing and education of one's children does not encompass the right "to control the upbringing of their children by introducing them to matters of and relating to sex in accordance with their personal and religious values and beliefs."

7) that once children are put in a public school, the parents' "fundamental right to control the education of their children is, at the least, substantially diminished."

8) that this decision is based on "our evolving understanding of the nature of our Constitution."

9) that since the Constitution has evolved to create the right to abortion, the evolving Constitution takes sex education away from parents and puts it "within the state's authority as parens patriae."
This case has drawn some new allies for the cause of parental rights. The school should not have been subjecting grade-schoolers to such offensive questionaires. The leftist judge Reinhardt of the 9th federal Circuit likes to invent constitutional rights when it suits his favorite causes (atheism, abortion, sodomy, socialism), but doesn't want parents directing the upbringing of their own kids.

No comments: