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The much-needed "Parental Bill of Rights"

Updated: Jul 21, 2023

Parents should be the ultimate authority when it comes to the education of their child. Too often, politicians look the other way while school districts attempt to subvert parental oversight. That could be about to change in Idaho.

House Bill 163 has been introduced by Rep. Judy Boyle and Sen. Ben Toews, with the backing of state Superintendent Debbie Critchfield.

The "Parental Bill of Rights," as it's called, would add parent and guardian rights that are not currently found in Idaho state law.

The bill requires that schools notify parents about changes to a child's mental, emotional or physical health. The legislation also requires parents are informed regarding:

  • Student’s academic and health-related information;

  • School-offered health and wellness services;

  • Notification and parent permission for surveys that could determine a student’s personal information such as sexuality, religion, political beliefs or family financial details;

  • Notification of contact with law enforcement in the school setting; and

  • Reasonable access to observe school activities

The bill has already passed unanimously out of the House Education Committee. Co-sponsors include the chairs of both the House and Senate Ed committees.

It's disappointing that some school districts don't already do this voluntarily. If it takes a state law to make it happen and put parents back in charge, so be it.

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