Education /

House Republicans Pass 'Parents Bill of Rights' Legislation

Democrats voted party-line against the measure

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed a bill that if signed into law would provide more transparency in education and give parents deeper insights about what their children are being taught in schools.

H.R. 5, the Parents Bill of Rights Act, would require school districts to post curriculum information publicly, as well as provide parents with a list of all books and reading material available in school libraries.

It would also require teachers to offer two in-person meetings with parents each year, allow parents to address school boards, and disclose school district budgets, including revenues and expenditures, and require schools to notify parents of violent activity occurring on school grounds or at school sponsored events.

Under H.R. 5, parents would also have new protections to help protect children’s privacy. Schools would not be able to share data with tech companies without parental permission, schools cannot sell data for commercial purposes, parents would have a say when schools update privacy policies, and parental consent would be required before any medical screening taking place at school — including mental health or substance abuse screenings.

The legislation is a significant step in America’s culture war, as Republicans and conservatives advance various school reform measures across the country.

“In a WIN for America’s moms and dads, @HouseGOP just passed H.R. 5, the Parents Bill of Rights, to guarantee your God-given right to be involved in your child’s education is never taken away,“ Rep. Burgess Owens wrote on Twitter, celebrating the legislative victory.

“Today was a win for every mother, every father, but most importantly, for every student in America,” House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told reporters. “You have a Parents’ Bill of Rights now, but unfortunately the Democrats are too extreme to believe that parents should have a say.”

Democrats, to whom teachers unions contributed 99 percent of their political donations during the 2022 election cycle, strongly objected to the bill, going so far as calling it fascist.

“This Republican bill is asking the government to force the outing of LGBT people before they are ready,” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., argued on the House floor prior to the bill’s passage. “When we talk about progressive values, I can say what my progressive value is, and that is freedom over fascism.”

The Senate, which is currently under Democrat control, is not expected to take up the bill.

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