If you haven’t already heard, you need to… A dad who is working to make school systems work for and not against children with disabilities, posted a Bill of Parent’s Rights and very quickly was put in Facebook Jail.  All his pages, some dealing with support to disabled children’s parents, some dealing with opting out, some dealing with organizing attendance to state Educational hearings, were made invisible… He can see them; no one else can.

You can call it censorship if you wish; but whatever you wish to call it, it effectively stops the spread of ideas.  it is what Arab nations do when their citizens who are fed up with their government’s corruption and finally pour out into the street to demonstrate.

Why would Facebook which allows full female breasts to be shown (as long as the nipple is covered); full viewing of buttocks on both genders; which is recalcitrant in stepping in to stop the bullying of teens in the name of free speech; which makes complaining about being stalked and harassed as an adult, a super-long tedious process to protect the stalker’s rights of free speech; within 7 minutes, ban something called the Parents’ Bill of Rights Page, and then ban all subsequent pages this parent advocate has ever put out for dissemination?

Bloggers are already calling foul…  but it is a big country and we need more outrage, especially when going against Facebook.

Maybe because according to US News Reports, Mark Zuckerberg is doubling down on education. 

Why would posting an innocent parents’ bill of rights, cause this corporate behometh to ban something so representative of the democratic process? Obviously before we go further, we have to look at what was said…

It starts with this… (1) As parents, we have the fundamental, moral, and constitutional right to make decisions on behalf of our children in regards to their education.  

That should not be anything of consequence.  That same clause is written into almost every educational law passed by the US Congress.  And that is probably as it should be, isn’t it? Do you think a state has more right to how our children are raised than do that child’s parents or guardian?  In some cases, perhaps.  Parents are human and therefore are not always perfect. But for all parents?

There should be no issue with that clause; let’s move on.

As we run through the subsequent clauses we see parents should have the right to:

  • the type of school we decide they go to
  • our ability to refuse or opt our children out of standardized assessments

So, since only one state has made Charter Schooling unconstitutional, it can’t be the first.  So it has to be the second.. Silencing conversation about opting out?  Really?

But there is more: and it is a little long…

“Parents reserve the right, as dictated by United States of America Federal Law, Title 34, Subtitle A, Chapter 1, Part 99.32 (b), to request all personal identifiable information sent as data or official records to all parties indicated in the entirety of Title 34, Subtitle A, and to receive the entire list of all those who have disseminated, received, or researched said data, and to receive such record keeping as required by federal law, within the 30 day timeframe.”

Aye, there’s the rub…

Apparently they don’t want you to know that YOU, a citizen of the United States of America, already has the right to request who has looked over your child’s data?

As a parent myself, I have to ask why…..

Why would any corporation, especially Facebook, be in arms that parents know if their child’s data goes to the US Dept of Education, their state’s Department of Education, their local university which is studying educational data in their state, a college their child wishes to attend?

Why? Why would anyone be against disclosing any legitimate dissemination of data to authorized entities? Why would anyone be against letting parents know where their child’s data goes?

No reason? And so therefore their overblown panic to an innocuous declaration must now bring up this much bigger question. What data do they already know is being disseminated to unauthorized entities which if they disclose, puts them in a criminally liable position?….  Because violating ones free speech on ones site dedicated to free expression, is a pretty big thing; one only exercises it as one approaches the levels of tactics called “last resort”.

Now under the last clause listed above, there are a series of sub-clauses all relating to a parent’s right to control data on their child…  One would think any parent should have that right as long as they are legally and often accountable for that child up to age 18.

  • This would also include any State Longitudinal Data System, or any Federal system
  • Parents have the right to reject any “competency-based education” decisions
  • Parents may freely reject any form of data collection, data-mining, or data sharing that would lead to our child having a pre-determined pathway.
  • For any education decisions regarding our children that we, as parents, feel is not safe, or is inadequate, or is unhealthy for our children, we hereby reserve the right to be able to give public comment to any governing body.
  • As parents, we reserve the right to gather, discuss, and give advice to other parents or concerned citizens, in any public meeting or gathering place or social gathering place, whether it is physical or on the internet, without censorship.
  • Parents have the right to lobby elected officials or local school board officials or state board of education officials, regarding pending, suggested, or passed legislation or regulation.
  • As parents, we reject the ability of corporations to “invest” or “hedge” in education with financial predictors of success, including social impact bonds, or any other type of investments where financial institutions or corporations would gain financial benefit or loss based on student outcomes.
  • As parents, we believe our child’s teacher(s) are the front line for their education, and therefore, have the most immediate ability and responsibility to guide our children towards academic success, and therefore, should have the most say in their instruction.
  • We reject any basis of accountability or framework system meant to falsely label or demean any teacher, administrator, school staff, or school, based on students outcomes as it pertains to state or national standardized assessments.
  • As parents, as the primary stakeholders for our child’s education, we therefore demand representation on any group, committee, task force, commission, or any such gathering of stakeholders to determine educational decisions for children, be it at a local, state, or national level in equal or greater representation on any such group as that allotted to outside corporations.

 

Most of us are scratching our heads… WHY WOULD FACEBOOK NOT ALLOW THE PUBLIC TO SEE THIS? And to do so in such a short amount of time, faster than I could read the whole darn thing?

And if there is no legitimate reason…. what is this saying about what’s to come for all our children?  A future of policy dictation?  A future of having no discussion, no fact checking, having all educational policy run through fait accompli? What does this say about letting for profit corporations be in charge of our children’s education?  With no parental oversight?

What YOU can do and should, is check out the brand new petition (first listing in the appendix) and if you have even one single feisty bone in you, quickly sign it….Let’s get this started.

 

Appendix

Parent Bill of Rights for Education

The Parent Bill Of Rights For Education

The Irony Of Mark Zuckerberg & Facebook Jail For A Parent Bill Of Rights For Education

Opt Out Dad Sent to Facebook Jail

 

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