Taking Back America By Taking Back Our Schools
Published Jan 7, 2012 at 3:00 am (Updated Jan 5, 2012)
Sometimes this editorial page finds itself in agreement with the political left. And sometimes the left uses us to score cheap, dishonest points against Republicans. Yesterday, the latter happened.
Last spring, the New Hampshire House considered a bill (House Bill 542) to give parents more say over what their children are taught in public schools. It’s a concept we support, but this time the execution was all wrong. The bill would have allowed parents to pull their children from courses the parents or children found “objectionable” and then design their own alternative. But the state would have been forbidden from overseeing the alternative. That would have allowed parents to opt out of some public education requirements, if not all of them. We published an editorial in April that opposed the bill and made that point.
In July, the bill was amended and much improved. Parents would be allowed to remove their kids from objectionable courses, but alternatives would be required and would have to be approved by the school district. Though still cumbersome and poorly designed (which we wrote at the time), the bill would not allow children to avoid getting an education. That amended version passed the House on Wednesday.
In an effort to discredit New Hampshire and the state Republican Party during the first-in-the-nation primary, the left-wing website Think Progress, wrote: “New Hampshire GOP passes bill to make school optional for kids” and claimed that our editorial on the original bill was a commentary on the amended one. The New Hampshire Democratic Party, with the knowledge that the claims were false, forwarded the fraud on Twitter, thus participating in a scheme to discredit their own state.
What a shameful, dishonest thing to do to the people and to New Hampshire.
Text of New Hampshire BHB542