Jewish World Review Jeff Jacoby March 5, 2007
Whatever else might be said about it, US District Judge Mark Wolf’s decision in Parker v. Hurley is a model of clear English prose.
“The constitutional right of parents to raise their children does not include the right to restrict what a public school may teach their children,” Wolf unambiguously wrote in dismissing a suit by two Lexington, Mass. couples who objected to lessons the local elementary school was teaching their children. “Under the Constitution public schools are entitled to teach anything that is reasonably related to the goals of preparing students to become engaged and productive citizens in our democracy.”
Entitled to teach anything. That means, the judge ruled, that parents have no authority to veto elements of a public-school curriculum they dislike. They have no right to be notified before those elements are presented in class. And the Constitution does not entitle them to opt their children out of such classes when the subject comes up.
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