Last Saturday I wrote an article that asked the question, "Is there a Bogeyman in Senate Bill 2186?" My purpose in writing that article was to try to raise awareness about a bill that it seemed nobody was really questioning and which had flown through the Senate unopposed. Well, I believe I can now say with certainty that not only is there a Bogeyman in this bill, but it needs to be killed when it comes back to the floor of the House.
In the aforementioned article I wrote:
"…the bill completely empowers the Superintendent of Public Instruction to ‘provide the school with a waiver of any state statute or rule or provide authorization necessary for implementation of the plan.’ Yes, you read it right. She – and she alone – can waive any existing statute or rule in relation to education to make an innovation happen. That’s a lot of power in one office."
And that is the Bogeyman in the bill. Oddly enough, this has been confirmed for me through another bill that is currently being considered in the Senate Education Committee– that being House Bill 1389, which would allow parents to "opt a child of the parent out of any survey or testing that is not a part of a curriculum, to which the parent has a philosophical, moral, or religious objection."
Imagine this… suppose HB 1389 passes. This bill (and any other existing or future "statute or rule") could be completely overridden by the Superintendent of Public Instruction under the authority of SB 2186 when implementing an "innovative education program."
The entire purpose of HB 1389 is to empower parents in their children’s education. Yet, parents could be completely undermined by one bill that so far not even one legislator has had the courage to step forward and oppose.
SB 2186 will soon return to the House floor. Unless there’s a tidal wave of opposition to convince legislators that the bill needs to die; parents risk losing any control they currently have – and any they might later have – over the education of their children.
The best way to get rid of the Bogeyman is to turn the lights on. And time is running out to turn the lights on for the legislators in the House.