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Promise Coalition applauds VA's new education policies

It is important to highlight the underlying foundation of school choice: the fundamental right of parents to direct the upbringing of their children.

The following quote may be attributed to Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel and Vice President of Advocacy Strategy Emilie Kao, on behalf of the Promise to America’s Parents Coalition, regarding new policies the Virginia Department of Education announced Tuesday that ensure respect for the role of parents in directing the education and care of their children:

“The Promise to America’s Parents Coalition—a coalition of 40 grassroots and policy organizations that work to preserve the fundamental right of parents to direct their children’s upbringing, education, and care—supports Virginia’s new education policies. These commonsense policies protect the mental and physical health of children by ensuring that schools respect parents’ role as the primary caregivers for their children. Parents know their children best, and schools shouldn’t exclude parents from important decisions about their children’s education or health care.

“The Promise to America’s Parents provides a road map for sound laws and policies to respect parental rights through accountability, choice, and transparency. Schools should protect the rights of parents so that they can fulfill their parental duties to their children. Both the U.S. Constitution and the Virginia Constitution protect the rights of parents to direct their children’s upbringing, education, and care. Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s new policies align with the Promise to America’s Parents by ensuring parents are the primary decisionmakers in the lives of their children. The Promise Coalition applauds the governor for recognizing the important role parents play in their children’s lives, for preserving fair competition for female athletes, for protecting the privacy of all students in intimate school facilities like bathrooms and locker rooms, and for ensuring that all students are treated with dignity and respect.”

ADF submitted a formal comment in support of the new policies in October of last year. ADF attorneys are litigating several cases in Virginia challenging school districts that have adopted policies that harm teachers’ rights and also usurp the rights of parents, including Harrisonburg City Public School Board, Loudoun County School Board, and Albemarle County School Board.

Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.

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Emilie Kao
Emilie Kao
Senior Counsel, Vice President of Advocacy Strategy
Emilie Kao serves as senior counsel and vice president of advocacy strategy for Alliance Defending Freedom.