A story I read by A.P. Dillion reminds me of the Seinfeld episode with the Soup Nazi, but instead of saying “no soup for you!” The education establishment is saying to parents “no opt-out for you!”
In contrast to a bill that just passed the Alaska Legislature that recognizes a parent’s natural right of control over their child’s education, New Mexico is apparently telling schools there is no opt-out option.
Dillion shared this excerpt from a story in the Rio Rancho Observer about the number of refusals to take PARCC has dropped in the Rio Rancho Public School District. They quote Beth Pendergrass who is a spokesperson for Rio Rancho Public Schools in Rio Rancho, NM.
Still, RRPS does not believe parents really have the right to opt out, according to RRPS spokeswoman Beth Pendergrass.
“We call them ‘refusals’ here just because we feel like ‘opt-out’ implies that there is an option for students not to take the test, and we really don’t think there is an option, but parents have refused to allow their kids to take the test,” she said.
The New Mexico Public Education Department also believes that there is no refusal option, citing federal mandates that students complete statewide assessments.
So apparently parental “disobedience” is on the decrease in the school district as fewer students are “refusing” the test.
Regarding federal mandates… here I thought with the Every Student Success Act states could include opt-outs in their state plans submitted to the U.S. Department of Education. You mean the state of New Mexico didn’t interpret it that way? What about all of that control states were supposed to get from this latest reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary School Act?
It doesn’t exist.