The response I received from you via e-mail dated March 1, 2012 is a clear violation of my rights as a parent. It is also a clear indication that ——- is being denied a free, appropriate, public education in the least restrictive environment unless he participates in the TCAP.
I am aware that parental rights are broadly protected by Supreme Court decisions (Meyer and Pierce), especially in the area of education. 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). I am also aware that Jo O’Brien, Assistant Commissioner of Standards at the Colorado Department of Education stated, “There is no federal law prohibiting a parent from opting their child out of CSAP testing.”
As I stated in my letter dated March 1, 2012, I do not give my consent for my son, ——–, to participate in CSAP/TCAP testing at any time during the current school year. He is not to be removed from his classroom for the purpose of make-up testing or for any conversation or to be coerced to take the assessment. As the master educator of ———– Elementary School, I am certain that you value your students and their varied needs. I know that you want all of the children in your care to be honored—their talents, their needs, and their sensitivities. I know that you would not want any harm to come to any of your young charges. Therefore, I am confident you will honor my request to let ——— remain with his classmates throughout the regular school day once he returns to school.
I want to be very clear about my expectations for the continuation of ———’s education upon his return to school. I do not give my consent for ——— to participate in the TCAP during the 2011-2012 academic year. I do not give my consent for him to participate in make-up testing. I fully expect this request to be honored, and if it is not honored I will consider this a direct violation of my parental rights and will seek further action. There is a great deal of community support for parental rights in the education of their children, and if necessary I will seek redress.
In the best interests of my children,