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
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1/15/14  12:53 am
Commenter: Teacher

This amendment represents what is wrong with education today

This amendment speaks directly to the two most significant problems with education today.  The first is the overwhelming lack of trust that anyone has in teachers.  From principals in our schools all the way to the state level, the educational hierarchy and the parents of our students feel some kind of urgent necessity to implement all kinds of regulatory or evaluative programs and procedures to guide, proscribe, or monitor our every action.  We are professionals with degrees and, more importantly, a passion for working every day to see that children get the best of what we and the world have to offer.  Amendments like these say very loudly and clearly to teachers that we can not be trusted to make good decisions for our students and that it is necessary that outside entities maintain as much control as they can on our ability to teach.  It’s no wonder education is in the state that it is when the most integral part of the institution is daily losing his or her ability to get anything done. 

The second problem with education today is the lack of constructive parental involvement.  In this case, the few that might oppose a sensitive piece of material need only have a conversation with a teacher and they would find that teachers overwhelmingly have the interests of their students in mind first and foremost.  If there is a piece of material that is offensive to a student or parent, a simple conversation will resolve the issue.  It does not take a state mandate to ensure the safety or security of students regarding sensitive materials.  It takes a teaching professional that is trusted to make good decisions and constructive, supportive parental involvement to ensure that each and every student's needs are met. 

I wholeheartedly oppose this amendment because it adds to the trends that are hurting our educational system.

CommentID: 30556