Rep. Ben Carpenter
Alaska House of Representatives, District 8

Bill Highlight: 382 Parent/Teacher Bill of Rights

Sponsor Statement

House Bill 382 increases parental participation in their children’s education and allows parents access to school curriculum, budgets, and school boards. The bill allows teachers to use their professional judgement to establish and enforce rules for their classrooms.

Parental involvement has been a top priority for school leaders for decades, and research shows that it can make a major difference in student outcomes. Studies show more parental involvement leads to improved academic outcomes. When parents are involved in their children’s schooling, students show higher academic achievement, school engagement, and motivation. School practices encouraging families to support their child’s math learning at home have led to higher percentages of students scoring at or above proficiency on standardized math tests. Research shows that parent involvement with reading activities has a positive impact on reading achievement, language comprehension, and expressive language skills, as well as students’ interest in reading, attitudes toward reading, and level of attention in the classroom.

HB 382 requires all public schools to be operated by academic policy committees. Alaska’s charter public schools, which are operated by academic policy committees comprised of parents, teachers, and school employees, are the best in the nation. Academic policy committees hire the school principal and employees, supervise the employees, and supervise the academic operation of the school.

This bill would allow parents to review curriculum, books, and all instructional materials, to meet with each teacher of the child, to review the budget, to address the school board, to withdraw children from activities or programs, and to provide consent for medical examinations. HB 382 has numerous parental notification requirements including for a change in curriculum, options for school choice, any plans to eliminate gifted and talented programs, or if any school professional acts to change a student’s gender markers.

HB 382 also protects a child’s privacy by narrowly specifying who, and under what circumstances, someone who is not a parent or guardian can access the student’s records. It also protects them by requiring that every school’s written safety program include procedures to address the physical safety and privacy of students in locker rooms and bathrooms by requiring a student to use only facilities designed for members of the student’s biological sex.

HB 382 adds a section of law that does not exist to provide teachers with a bill of rights. Teachers will establish their classroom rules and schools will respect their professional judgement, provide leadership training to teachers, and treat them with civility and respect. Schools cannot require a teacher to fill out excessive paperwork and cannot adopt curricula and policies that conflict with the curricula and policies of the school’s academic policy committee.


More Information:  AK LEG