The June 2015 Administrative Guide is available online. The United States Supreme Court has recognized that the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution affords parents the fundamental right to direct their children’s upbringing and education. With the recent administration of the PARCC testing, districts have seen an increase in parents insisting they have the right to have their child avoid taking the test, or “opt out” of it. The first part of this Administrative Guide discussed the nature of this fundamental right, and whether it can be used to direct how a district teaches their children. This issue continues that discussion, and includes cases discussing whether a parent has a right to be present on school property, whether parents can opt their children out of certain programs they deem to be objectionable, and whether they can insist their children be admitted to certain programs and classes.
In addition, the School News Briefs reviews four new cases. In one case the Appellate Division ruled that a board was not reckless in 2009 for failing to require that field hockey players wear protective eyewear, because no such eyewear was required at the time. In another case, a board of education did not violate parents’ constitutional rights by requiring their children to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, in accordance with state law.
The June 2015 Impact on Negotiations reviews three cases including one in which PERC held that a grievance contesting a newly hired teacher’s placement on the salary guide must proceed to binding arbitration because initial placement on the salary guide is a mandatorily negotiable issue.