Amid a nationwide movement of parents attempting to safeguard their children from pornographic materials in school libraries, critical race theory in school classrooms, and boys in the girls’ restrooms, one Houston-area school district is refusing to provide parents with requested materials for review.
In November, Waller ISD father Josh Posey confronted the school board with explicit sexual passages found in school library books. At the time, the superintendent agreed to take action to more closely monitor which books were available in the school library.
Following the discovery of the pornographic books—and while discussions about critical race theory in classrooms raged across the nation—Posey and fellow parents began submitting Public Information Act Requests to Waller ISD regarding school curriculum.
One of the parents’ requests was to review materials from a seminar directed by a third-party organization, in which sexual violence and other topics were discussed with students. However, Waller ISD has refused to disclose the curriculum and appealed the request to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton for permission to withhold it from parents.
At a school board meeting on Wednesday, Posey publicly confronted the board over the matter.
“You [school board] used your attorneys, paid for with parent tax money, to petition the attorney general to rule that a parent has no right to view this presentation,” Posey testified.
“What are you hiding in this presentation? What do you not want the parents in this district to see that you’re teaching our children?” Posey asked. “Why will you not allow one parent to view this when thousands of students already have?”
The students who viewed the presentation were required to turn in permission slips, similar to parent right-to-know slips required for sex education, to view the presentation in science class.
“How much taxpayer money have you spent trying to keep us from learning what you’re teaching our children here?” Posey continued. “And if this is nothing and it all turns out to be nothing, why would you waste these resources fighting parents?”
The presentation was hosted by Family Ties, Family Resource Services, a nonprofit in the Waller area, for Waller High School students; it addressed topics such as dating violence, sexual violence, and sexual harassment.
When Posey contacted the organization for clarification on the presentation materials and how topics would be addressed, he found they refused to provide the documents and would not communicate with him in a timely manner. Posey contacted the school principal with his concerns and said the principal received similar dismissive responses from Family Ties upon reaching out.
“How can you allow a third party to present anything to our students without vetting the material or making it available for parents to review?” Posey asked the board. “Our children deserve more thoughtful protection.”
In speaking with Texas Scorecard, Posey said that unfortunately, “no community is safe,” imploring parents to “stick their nose in everything happening within their district.”
Posey says that upon reviewing school programs such as Social-Emotional Learning and Student Health and Counseling, “it won’t be long until you [parents] realize you have been under attack for years and you didn’t know it.”
Waller ISD did not respond to Texas Scorecard’s request for comment before publication.