Del. Legislation’s Goals: Transparency In Schools
Delaware public and charter schools would be required to share general course descriptions, information about textbooks and other instructional materials on their websites, under legislation being introduced in the Delaware General Assembly.
The portal would also provide information on how the school communicates information about violent incidents that take place at schools to parents, guardians and other stakeholders, and what health care services are offered at the school and how parental or guardian notification or consent is handled.
“The Delaware Education Right to Know Act is intended to increase educational transparency and build consensus among all the people with an interest in helping Delaware children succeed in the classroom,” Representative Charles Postles, R- Milford North said about the bill, of which he is prime sponsor. “Teachers are trained professionals and need the freedom to effectively carry out their essential mission. At the same time, parents should have access to what their children are being taught as well as what policies schools have set on important issues. This bill is an attempt to reconcile these interests in a cooperative way.”
Postles, who is a former school board member, said the legislation was carefully structured to not be burdensome on schools.
The House Republican Caucus released these highlights of the legislation, detailing what would be placed on school websites:
- A course syllabus or a written summary of each instructional course.
- A general description of instructional materials, textbooks, and digital resources that educators plan to utilize in each instructional course.
- The school’s policy on how information is communicated to parents/guardians and other stakeholders about violent incidents taking place at the school.
- What health care services are offered at the school and how parental/guardian notification and consent are handled regarding these services.
Parents and guardians would also be assured of an opportunity to meet with the educators teaching their children at least once each academic year. The superintendent of each public school district, or the head of each charter school, in consultation with teachers, would have the flexibility for determining the timing and method for satisfying this requirement.