Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Education
State Board of Education
Regulations Governing Local School Boards and School Divisions [8 VAC 20 ‑ 720]
Action Amendments Regarding Use of Controversial or Sensitive Instructional Materials
Comment Period Ended on 1/15/2014
Previous Comment     Next Comment     Back to List of Comments
1/5/14  10:13 pm
Commenter: Teacher

Parents and Student already can opt out

Parents and students always have a choice of an alternative text for their students to read. It is near impossible to label everything that could or could not be controversial text within an entire course. This would end up being a document of hundred of literature, articles, and video clips that would need to be approved which would otherwise be an option for individual students and parents to opt out, as they have done for years. Teachers state in their syllabus the material that will be presented in the classroom, such as American Literature authors.

Involved parents would already know what material is being offerred to their students and can raise their own concerns or requests for alternative and they have always done. As professionals, teachers should be trusted to use their best professional judgement on classroom materials. When those decision become suspect, parents have and will raise their own questions about a certain book or film that they would like their student to be provided an alternative.

When teachers are not trusted to use their professional judgement for material selection or how they teach, they no longer become teachers but rather glorified babysitters. 

CommentID: 29848