A group of parents in Adelanto, California have decided they are fed up with their children’s school. In an unconventional effort to make changes, the parents will be taking control of Desert Trails Elementary School. They seek to implement several reforms, including a longer school day. The parents were granted permission from San Bernardino County Superior Court Judge Steve Malone to continue with their plans. They are currently looking for charter school operators to run the school.
California, Chicago, and Texas all have passed “trigger laws”, and it’s currently being debated in additional states. “Trigger laws” allow parents of students at low-performing schools to sign a petition in order to fire all staff, turn school into a charter school, or close the school. Cynthia Ramirez, whose daughter attends Desert Trails, was reported by the Associated Press as saying, “It’s our kids. We can’t back down.”
No group of parents have been successful at fully restructuring a school under the “trigger laws”. However, parents of Desert Trails Elementary School students seem to be pretty close.
If you haven’t heard more about these laws, chances are that you will this fall when a feature film on the topic titled, “Won’t Back Down” is released in theaters. The film starring Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal tackles the topic and is produced by the same team that brought you Waiting for Superman. You can view the trailer for Won’t Back Down below.
Would you utilize the “trigger laws” in your state to improve your child’s school? Are parents qualified to make these decisions or should it be left to a local school board?