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MADISON, Wisconsin (LifeSiteNews) — A Wisconsin school district held a mandatory staff development day where teachers were told, “Parents are not entitled to know their kids’ [gender] identities. That knowledge must be earned.”

The directive undermining parental authority was given to teachers in the Eau Claire Area School District (ECASD), according to a statement published by Empower Wisconsin (EW), which included a copy of a slide from the presentation urging teachers and staff to hide critical information from parents.

Eau Claire Area School District directive to teachers, staff

“We are appalled that ECASD would display such blatant disregard for the parents and guardians of our community’s children. We are equally dismayed that current school district leadership would pressure teachers into breaking a social contract that we all know and understand — that parents and guardians hold primary responsibility and decision making for the welfare and care of their children,” said the EW statement.

“This blatant disregard for parental rights and responsibilities that has been allowed to creep into our schools under current board leadership is communicating three very dangerous messages to parents and the wider community,” declared the EW statement, further asserting:

  1. Schools are in control of children, not parents and families — When you entrust your child into the walls of ECASD, you no longer have the right as a parent to be informed of major developments in your child’s school life. In fact, you must “earn it”.
  2. Current Leadership is willing to pit teachers against parents — Open communication between the classroom and home has always been critical to healthy school communities and student development. ECASD is putting teachers in a difficult and dishonest position by instructing them to actively withhold information from parents.
  3. What goes on in the walls of ECASD is privileged information — By indicating that information about your child is “knowledge that must be earned”, ECASD is setting a dangerous precedent. If identity questions for your child can be hidden from you, is diet, curriculum, healthcare, inappropriate relationships, mental health concerns, etc. also no longer the business of parents? Just what are parents and guardians allowed to know and when?

A 2020 lawsuit brought against another Wisconsin school district resulted in a partial injunction against the Madison Metropolitan School District “allowing children of any age to transition to a different gender identity at school — without parental consent,” according to Empower Wisconsin. That case, filed by the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty and the Alliance Defending Freedom, is now on the Wisconsin Supreme Court docket.