Breckenridge Texan

State Rep. Glenn Rogers discusses ‘Mothers and Fathers of Texas Education’

State Rep. Glenn Rogers discusses ‘Mothers and Fathers of Texas Education’
March 04
11:37 2023

By Glenn Rogers/Texas House of Representatives – District 60

“Cultivated mind is the guardian genius of democracy…”

These are the wise words of Mirabeau B. Lamar, President of the Republic of Texas from 1838-1841. This phrase helped inspire the Texas Legislature to do something great for future generations.

Even as a proud Texas Aggie, I appreciate, as Texas Longhorns may recognize, the motto and Latin version of this quote, Disciplina Praesidium Civitatis. Lamar knew how to fortify Texas for years to come: Teach our children. He advocated to endow public lands in order to create a public education system in every county; an endeavor that came to fruition well after his death and earned him the title “The Father of Texas Education.”

Texas is blessed to have free schools statewide, and it is the duty of the Legislature to ensure education is effective. As Texans, we expect our children’s learning experiences to be safe, fair, and of high quality. On the local level, education should be a partnership between students, teachers, school administrators, and most importantly, parents.

An educational partnership can only be successful if parents are afforded certain rights. Parents deserve access to scholastic material their children are provided. Parents deserve the ability to meet with teachers and principals about their child. Parents deserve to be heard by local school boards. Parents should be allowed to request a change of class or teacher. A parent is entitled to every written document concerning their student. Parents should be allowed to observe learning sessions involving their children. Fundamentally, schools should never prevent a parent from exercising any of these rights.

In the media, discussions of Parental Rights are more prevalent than ever before. Politicians seek to win the approval of parents by pledging to fight for these rights. The topic is on the minds of many conservatives, and rightfully so.

Yet, there is good news that the media is not reporting and is conveniently overlooked. In Texas, these rights are lawfully afforded to every parent. In the “Texas Election Code, Title 2. Public Education, Subtitle E. Students and Parents, Chapter 26. Parental Rights and Responsibilities,” each and every one of these wonderful rights mentioned above are protected. Numerous Parental Rights have been secured for decades. Throughout the years, the Legislature has amended the Code and continuously improved these rights.

In the Code, it states “Parents shall be encouraged to actively participate in creating and implementing educational programs for their children.” Our students deserve the best education, which means parents and schools must take advantage of the partnership and rights the Great State of Texas has given us all.

Significant Parental Rights are in the Texas education code; but what about “School Choice”? Texas already has one of the most robust “school choice” systems for parents in the nation. Between open-enrollment public schools, private schools, charter schools, homeschools, and online learning, parents have plenty of available options to place their child wherever they see fit.
A hundred-and-eighty-five years after Mirabeau B. Lamar earned his title, parents should also lay claim to their title: “MOTHERS and FATHERS of Texas Education.”

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