I talk to Kansans all the time who say they want to get involved and do something to help their community. One of the easiest, and quite frankly, most effective ways to get involved is by running for school board.

You might be asking what the school board does? Surprisingly a lot of authority gets delegated to local school boards. A lot of their power expanded during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many COVID protocols were set by the local school board.

Even a lot of the curriculum can be determined by the school board. Things like critical theory or comprehensive sex ed are often allowed into the classroom because of decisions made by the local school board.

Another issue that was highlighted this legislative session – fairness in women’s sports – is currently controlled by the local school.

If you are looking for the chance to impact our culture and to shape kid’s lives, will you consider running for school board in your area? The deadline to file to run with your county election officer is June 1st!

Sincerely,

Brittany Jones, Esq.
Director of Advocacy

FPIW Kids GraphicFamily Policy Alliance is proud to work with nearly 40 state-based family policy groups, including the Family Policy Institute of Washington. Blaine Conzatti is on staff at FPIW.

The federal government is threatening to withhold federal education funding from local school districts that disobey the recent Obama Administration bathroom directive.

The directive, issued via letter from the Departments of Education and Justice, mandates that public schools affirm a student’s chosen gender identity by allowing the student to use whichever showers, locker rooms, and bathrooms correspond to his or her chosen internal gender identity, regardless of his or her biological sex.

Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick has called the federal government’s threat “blackmail,” saying that the president “can keep his 30 pieces of silver.”

Texas and officials from 10 other states recently filed a lawsuit against federal agencies and administration officials, asking a federal court to overturn the directive, which was handed down by the executive branch without any congressional vote. The plaintiffs claim that the directive exceeds the executive branch’s authority and violates the 10th and 14th Amendments to the Constitution.

This lawsuit supplements the existing lawsuit filed by the State of North Carolina against the Department of Justice, and a lawsuit filed by families in North Carolina surrounding the same debate.

As states count the risk of losing federal education funding, it is important to understand how that funding is used.

Here in Washington, just 8 percent of a local school district’s budget comes from the federal government. Most of that money comes in the form of categorical grants that fund programs for disadvantaged students, such as special education, school lunches, Head Start, transportation services, and others.

It is unconscionable that a presidential administration would bully local school districts by threatening to withhold funding for programs aimed at low income and disadvantaged students unless they adopt the agenda of social experimentation foisted upon them by federal bureaucrats.  Local school districts should consider responding by using this as an opportunity to finally liberate their budgets from federal education funding and the strings that come with it.

The burdensome mandates that accompany federal funding give federal officials significant control over the affairs of local schools. It is estimated that the regulations that accompany federal education funding saddle states and local school districts with millions of hours of administrative work, costing local schools millions annually and converting them into bureaucracies that must do the bidding of the federal government for fear of losing their federal funding.

Federal mandates also hinder innovation and experimentation by creating a one-size-fits-all regulatory scheme. The good news is that states and local school districts can escape many of these obligations by choosing to refuse federal education funding.

Students benefit when local communities – not distant, unelected bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. – retain control over their schools. Maintaining local control over education allows schools to be more responsive to the unique needs of students in their communities. Because of this, schools and students will be in a better position if state and local education officials use this opportunity to rid themselves of federal education funding and the onerous regulations that accompany it.