Pubdate: Tue, 07 Mar 2006
Source: Daily Press (Newport News,VA)
Copyright: 2006 The Daily Press
Author: David Richards


This proposed policy would intrude on the privacy and rights of both
children and parents with no obvious prospects for success, and
without exhausting the alternatives.

I have a child of 11 in the school system. He is not yet affected by
these proposals. He uses the Internet and instant messages. I, as a
parent, have the right to monitor these activities, but I do so with
restraint because it violates a degree of trust. He has his own room
and is entitled to some privacy. When he is older, I know I have the
right to search it, to look under the bed for alcohol and evidence of
drugs; I will do so if I feel it is necessary, but it will be the
decision of my wife and me as parents, and once again we would use it
with restraint.

This mandatory policy is asserting that the school district grab that
right, that they randomly enter the house, go up to his bedroom and
search it, without any cause for suspicion. And all this will take
place without the voluntary consent either of the parents or of the
child. Yes, one can refuse one's consent but only by denying most of
what is valuable about an education. Only those wealthy enough to send
their child to a private school would have the right to disagree with
this policy.


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