ACLU Family Complaint – URGENT – READ NOW

*****ACLU Multi-Family Complaint**********

Send your letters of parental right violations regarding high stakes standardized testing to:

Nina Bishop
3065 Windward Way
Colorado Springs, CO 80917
719-233-1508 Mountain Standard Time Zone

Send letters traditional mail and include your contact info., copies of threatening school mail and denials to school activity, and your request to be included in the complaint.

It’s your right to guide your child’s education and protect your child from the damaging effects of high stakes standardized testing. It’s time we reclaimed the schools our tax dollars pay for!

United we can change education for our kids.

13 thoughts on “ACLU Family Complaint – URGENT – READ NOW”

  1. Regina on May 4, 2012 at 4:16 am said:I don’t know where to begin….I went to school with Sam today, Thursday, May 3rd, to make sure the school did not make Sam take the ISTEP (he was at home on Tuesday and Wednesday this week). I was pulled out by an administrator about thirty minutes into the school day with Sam and asked to speak with him. He brought me to his office and explained how they have to follow what the IDOE requires. If a child comes to school during ISTEP they must take the exams, and today they are doing makeup exams for ISTEP. Therefore if I don’t allow him to take the ISTEP he will have to stay home until the testing window is closed (meaning the next 4 days of school he would have to stay home until May 9th).This administrator then directed me to talk with Dr. Walker at the IDOE about my desire to opt Sam out of ISTEP and to hear what they mandate. She indicated I had no legal right to opt him out and that the state has the right to make a child take the test even if the parent/s object. She indicated if I decided to stay at school with my son that the school would have to call the legal authorizes to have us removed from school. I summarized for her the three options I thought I had: 1. Stay at school with my son and refuse the test, 2. Stay at home with my son, 3. Allow my son to take the test. Obviously there are consequences with all three situations. The first option threatens me with physical removal from the school and undue stress on my son. The second option denies my son a right to an education. The third option denies my right as a mom to say no to the excessive testing that is going on in our schools, especially in third grade.

    I told my son’s administrator that I feel like my son and I are being run out of this school because of ISTEP. He nodded his head and agreed that is what the DOE is requiring. He didn’t agree with the mandate from the DOE but he also didn’t want to put his school at jeopardy of sanctions. He indicated that he believes there are other laws such as compulsory education laws that contradict what the DOE is saying but at this point he has to follow the DOE directions.
    We were asked to take the test at 10:30 or leave the school. I decided to leave but tried to get Sam back in school later in the day as he really wanted to go to his Passions class at 2:30. I was told by phone not to come back as the DOE has been notified of Sam’s departure from school and the staff has been notified that Sam should not be allowed back at school today. When I asked about Sam going to school tomorrow he said something to the affect, “Tensions are high. If you come to school it will probably be a very ugly situation”.

    I feel so upset about many of the elements of this situation. I honestly thought the school would leave an opt out child/parent alone if they came to school to ensure their son’s right to an education while also denying participation in their flawed test. I am shocked that the school is responding in this manner and that the Indiana DOE can assert their power over a school in this way.

    Reply ↓

    • Nina Bishop on May 25, 2012 at 12:26 am said:I am so sorry for what’s happening to your student. Please send me your letter regarding a violation of your parental rights. Nina******ACLU Multi Family Complaint******
      Please send your letter of parental rights violations regarding high stakes standardized testing to:
      Nina Bishop
      3065 Windward Way
      Colorado Springs, CO 80917
      719-233-1508 Mountain Standard Time
      Please send copies of threatening school/district mail, denials to school activities, grade advancement or diploma, your contact information and your request to join the complaint. Please tie your complaint to the Supreme Court ruling supporting parents rights (see below):Parental rights are broadly protected by Supreme Court decisions (Meyer and Pierce), especially in the area of education, so why not in our state statutes? The Supreme Court has repeatedly held that parents posses the “fundamental right” to “direct the upbringing and education of their children.” Furthermore, the Court declared that “the child is not the mere creature of the State: those who nurture him and direct his destiny have the right coupled with the high duty to recognize and prepare him for additional obligations.” (Pierce v. Society of Sisters, 268 U.S. 510, 534-35) The Supreme Court criticized a state legislature for trying to interfere “with the power of parents to control the education of their own.” (Meyer v. Nebraska, 262 U.S. 390, 402.) In Meyer, the Supreme Court held that the right of parents to raise their children free from unreasonable state interferences is one of the unwritten “liberties” protected by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. (262 U.S. 399)
      In recognition of both the right and responsibility of parents to control their children’s education, the Court has stated,
      “It is cardinal with us that the custody, care and nurture of the child reside first in the parents, whose primary function and freedom include preparation for the obligations the State can neither supply nor hinder.” (Prince v. Massachusetts, 321 U.S. 158)

      Reply ↓

      • Susan Belttari on May 8, 2013 at 5:34 am said:I have a similar story involving a daughter who gets all As…but flunks the EOGs and is forced to RETAKE them by a bullying principal. I’m not a yelling parent at all, but I had to stand up for my daughter. She had all As (in NC) in 5th grade, yet flunked all EOGs by one or two points… the most upsetting part is that as I was frantically looking up the laws in NC to see if I could get her out of the retake, I found a law in NC passed in 2008 to “up” their scores was to have all children who scored a “2″ (on a scale of 1-lowest, to 4-highest) RETAKE THE TESTS. My daughter scored a 2 on math, reading and science, missing a score of 3 (passing) each by one or two points.Called the principal bullied me on the phone and said she is authorized to give her that test up until the last day of school and if she didn’t go in she would be truant. Also said there was no opting-out whatsoever. No remediation was offered, since she had to take it two days later and her teacher said it would be “a waste of time.” I have a string of abusive emails from the principal which I will be putting together. I asked the principal in an email, “Tell me what is the benefit that my child will get by retaking these tests, she is not a candidate for being held back a grade, so what good is this doing her at all – it has shattered her self-confidence?” The princpal’s response was, “I cannot say how taking the test again will benefit any individual child.” Astonishing!!This was last year in 5th grade. She is at a new middle school now and I am determined to have her opt out, mainly because my daughter has Non-Verbal Learning Disorder (and an IEP, with ADD and mild hypotonia), making standardized tests a living hell for her. She now has test-taking accommodations on her IEP now, which was refused at the elementary school last year. This story is much longer but my point is that taking the tests once with no opt out is ridiculous but making these children RETAKE them is ABUSIVE! I have to find a way to get her out of these RETAKES, as I know this will be a problem again in 8th grade (NC requires retakes in 5th, 8th and 11th grade).


        Reply ↓

        • Carla on June 26, 2013 at 5:50 pm said:Hi Susan,I also live in NC and will be opting my daughter out of the Diebels testing for 2nd grade and then the EOG tests. She has verbal apraxia and will never do well on these stupid tests. She received a 0 for comprehension on the last test but can tell you what a story is all about. When I asked her teacher why she received a 0 it was because she didn’t read FAST enough…yeah…exactly.I’ve printed out the letter that is available on this website for opting out and will be giving it to her principal in August. She was recommended to repeat first grade but I was told she could come back in August and re-take the test. We are going to refuse that and still have her go on to 2nd grade. Stand your ground!!


          Reply ↓

  2. question on behalf of parent of disabled child on October 19, 2012 at 2:28 am said:In NJ children with severe disabilities have to take the Alternate Proficiency Assessment (APA). I work with children who are middle school age, but on the cognitive level of an infant or preschool child. They are largely non-verbal, non-ambulatory, and unable to read or write. The APA means that we basically need to construe a huge,extremely elaborate and time consuming scenario to show that they are making progress in their grade level Core Content Curriculum. So, even though they are severely impaired they have to have goals linked to 8th grade science, math, language arts. These are kids who’s IEP goals (based on their actual level of functioning) are sitting up, looking toward a sound, etc. I have parents who say can’t we spend less time on the APA and more time giving them the therapies, etc. that they need. So…..the question is: can a parent opt out of the APA? And, if so, how?Reply ↓
  3. Heidi McDaniel on October 31, 2012 at 2:13 pm said:My daughter is autistic and in the 8th grade. At a meeting yesterday I gave the school system representative a copy of my Opt-Out letter. She stated that I could not opt my child out of state testing. She says that if I don’t want Maggie to take the test, she will be moved to a portfolio assessment. I think this is because of her IEP, but am not certain. I just don’t see any point in making her sit through hours and hours of test preparation, pre-test practice sessions, and then the hours of testing that she doesn’t understand and that are not used in any way to better her education. I will let you know what they come back with next…..Reply ↓
  4. Laura Stewart-Beach on November 7, 2012 at 10:53 pm said:I sent a opt out letter to our principal and was told they were still giving my son the test based on the council he got from the schools legal advisors.
    My letter to the school explains how it violates his rights to “life liberty and the pursuit of happiness”, as my son has anxity (testing) especially. He gets physically ill and the testing caused anxity and depression as he is learning diabled and can never pass the test. The test does not take into account his multiple learning disablities.
    I am instructing my child to write refuse on the test and not even put his name, do I have any other otions??? We are in NY state. If any one has any ideas or can assist with giving me some council I would appreciate it.Thanks much for any advice.
    Laura BeachReply ↓

    • admin on November 8, 2012 at 1:15 am said:Laura – Have you looked under the NY state page information? There is so much support available in NY! Let me know if you need more information once you have looked at that page (there is also a contact email for an opt-outer in NY).
      Peggy RobertsonReply ↓

    • Teresa on January 5, 2013 at 2:51 am said:We are trying to opt out of soft porn that is accessable on our young daughters laptops at school We are standing alone! Parents are so wimpy makes me sick.. I am so upset and they tell us to get a lawyer…Reply ↓
  5. Gerrie BOURQUE on November 26, 2012 at 10:29 pm said:I sent a written request to opt my children out of the Texas Starr testing. The school district phoned tea asking what to do. Tea told district that the school district would be breaking the law if they didn’t test my children. District said before they would tell parents to keep the child home because with taks there were no testing make up days, but now with Starr there is, they said that tea would not allow district to give high school diploma if they refused to test my child. Now what?Reply ↓
  6. Deb on December 6, 2012 at 3:48 pm said:This morning I delivered a letter to my school opting out of my school’s SECOND *practice* MSA (we’re in Maryland) to be held in mid-January (the first was held in November, before Thanksgiving!). I was told by the principal that I was the first parent to ever make this request, and that they’d have to ask the County Testing Coordinator (our school systems here are countywide) how to handle it – and this for a non-required test! I haven’t even broached the subject of the actual MSA’s yet – I figured I’d start here and see what happens. They were….taken aback, I think would be the right turn of phrase. I don’t want the school to suffer, as they’re between a rock and a hard place themselves, and I’m sure I’ve introduced tension to the dynamic (I’m also a parent volunteer and sometime substitute teacher there), but they were cordial about it through their surprise.I’ll have to get back to you on how it turns out…Reply ↓
ACLU Family Complaint – URGENT – READ NOW

Leave a Reply