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New Law Allows All County Residents a Voice in Public School Learning Materials

June 27th, 2017 by Jake Stofan
Your neighbor will now have a say in what your kids are learning in school, thanks to new law.
The new law has many in the education system concerned.
Three years ago state lawmakers told local school boards to seek more input when selecting textbooks. Keith Flaugh with Citizens Alliance says few listened.
“Parents get you know like a three to four week window to raise objections, after they’ve already made their decision what they’re going to buy,” said Flaugh.
The concerned Naples Grandfather forced legislation through during this past session that now requires school boards to give all county residents a say on selection.
Supporters say parents and families will now be guaranteed a say in what their kids are taught, something they say they were previously left out of.
Not everyone agrees. State Senator Bill Montford, a former school superintendent voted no on the legislation. He worries people taking advantage of the complaint system might keep old books on the shelves.
“It could cause the students in these schools not to have the opportunity for a good textbook or good material just because someone may disagree with something in there. And again they may very well be in the minority,” said Senator Montford.
Conerstone Learning Community is a private school and not impacted by the new law. Nonetheless, Director Jason Flom agrees the new law is a bad idea.
“We risk putting opinions over facts. We risk putting feelings and beliefs over tried and true methods,” said Flom.
Even with the new law, local school boards will still have the final say on adopting new educational materials, but voters have the final say on who is elected to the school boards.
School Boards will also be required to keep a list of instructional materials they’ve purchased on their websites.

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