Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Beware the Day of Silence

If your children attend public schools, you may have another controversy to contend with. The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) now sponsors a Day of Silence in schools to raise awareness of homosexuality. On that day, currently designated as April 17, students and teachers are allowed to be completely silent during instructional time. The schools do not officially sponsor this activity, but do allow it.

The American Family Association suggests a course of action to protest the politicizing of publicly-funded education:

  1. Call your local schools and ask whether they permit students or teachers to remain silent in the classroom on “Day of Silence.” IMPORTANT: Do not ask any administrator, school board member, or teacher if the school sponsors, endorses, or supports DOS. Schools do not technically sponsor the Day of Silence. Technically, it is students, often students in the gay-straight alliance, who sponsor it. Many administrators will tell you that they do not sponsor the DOS when, in fact, they do permit students and sometimes even teachers to remain silent during instructional time. Also ask administrators whether they permit teachers to create lesson plans to accommodate student silence.
  2. Find out what date the event is planned for your school. (The national date in 2009 is April 17, but some schools observe DOS on a different date).
  3. Inform the school of your intention to keep your children home on that date and explain why. (A sample letter is available.)
Even if your children are home educated, it is important to contact your local public schools to protest their permission of this activity. We must keep in mind that our tax dollars keep the local schools in operation, and we have every right to protest what goes on there. Also, even if our children do not attend the public schools, they must work and converse with those who do.
For more information or questions, visit Day of Silence Walkout.