School district keeps parental permission rules for students seeking services like abortion

Fairfield-Suisun Superintendent Jacki Cottingim
Fairfield-Suisun Superintendent Jacki Cottingim

.- Another California school district has voted to preserve a policy requiring students to have parental permission to leave campus for any reason. Changes to the policy would have allowed students to leave campus for any reason, including “confidential medical services” such as abortion.

The Fairfield-Suisun Board of Education on July 16 voted 5-2 to keep the policy, the California Catholic Daily says. It is the second time in four years the board has rejected a more permissive policy, which has been sought by Fairfield-Suisun Superintendent Jacki Cottingim.

Proponents of the change include the ACLU and Planned Parenthood. They maintain that the 1986 state Education Code requires the policy change, while their opponents say state law leaves the choice to local districts.

Karen England, executive director of Capitol Resource Institute, said in a statement that the board members understood that the law is clear about “confidential release.”

“They understand that local school boards are given the choice to include parents or exclude parents,” commented England, who testified in favor of the policy.

The Fairfield-Suisun School District covers Solano County, midway between Sacramento and San Francisco. It operates 31 schools for 23,000 students.

The Modesto City School Board has voted to remove the requirements for parental permission, while the Vista Board of Education in northern San Diego County requires parental consent for students who leave campus for “confidential medical services.”


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