Parents, guardians voice concerns over student rights in education

Published: Jun. 6, 2022 at 9:54 PM CDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) -Parents and guardians voiced their concern at Monday’s school board meeting over student rights in education policies citing that parents and guardians are the primary educators of their children.

Out of the six proposed rights, number six focused solely on parents and guardians’ consent to classroom LGBTQIA gender identity-related discussions, handouts, videos, and online/printed materials.

Emily Delzer, a parent, and teacher in Rapid City, says that most of the points listed on the student rights already exist and that she will protect her children no matter the cost.

Delzer states “Most of the points on that policy exist already, and it is all about parents being involved in their child’s education and having access to the curriculum and to session plans. All of those things are already a thing. Most of the time it is posted somewhere, so I was actually kind of confused until I got to the bottom of the list and realized. Ah...ok we are trying to take rights away we are not trying to the students. I will protect my children if it costs me everything.”

Natalie Slack, another parent in attendance, spoke out and said that implementing student rights over parents consenting to LGBTQIA discussions in classrooms is harmful to leads to children feeling accepted.

Slack states “I want my kids to know that the world is far bigger than just Rapid City, I want them to know that families come in different shapes and sizes and that they are valued just as they are. These are our kids, they are the next generation of kids who are going to lead this community, and frankly, right now they are leaving. So, I want to invest in this community, and I want to believe that our kids are valued here, but first, we have to tell them that they are safe.”

The school board voted to pull the student bill of rights from Monday’s agenda.

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