On Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Auburn) led a parents' rights roundtable along with U.S. Sen. Katie Britt (R-Montgomery), other Senate colleagues and members from various parental rights groups to discuss issues facing parents nationwide.
This week is the 14th National School Choice Week, and recently, officials in Alabama and nationally have been calling for school choice legislation and more parental rights in education. Another topic of discussion has been transgender athletes competing in sports not aligned with their biological sex.
Tuberville began the roundtable by saying, "A child's first teacher is their mom and dad. Unfortunately, during my career of coaching, I saw the downfall of the nuclear family."
Tuberville addressed the issue of the rising cost of education but said that the quality of that education was in decline. He said this is something he began to notice while coaching football by visiting different States to recruit football players and since becoming a U.S. Senator.
"Our schools are spending too much time on indoctrination, teaching what they want to teach, instead of reading, writing, math, and history," said Tuberville.
He said that while kids in China are learning calculus, kids in America are being taught to try and figure out which gender they are.
Tuberville said that when you talk to Democrats, all they want to do is spend more money, and money is not the answer. "We spend $14,000 per student in this country on education in public schools, adding, "We're number one to spend money on students of all the countries all over the world, yet we are not even close to 20th in education." he finished by saying what we are doing is not working and that fixing the problem starts with school choice.
Tuberville took a free-market approach and said that unions are controlling our schools, and if we have school choice, they have to start competing for kids, which will make education better at every school, not just one or two. He added that education should not be determined by zip code.
Following Tuberville, Britt said, "I am a mom of a 13 and 14-year-old, and that is what drove me to get off the sidelines and sit in the United States Senate today. When you look back over a period of time, the past several years, my husband and I know the country we grew up in, and then we see the country our children are growing up in, and while it's actually not too far apart, it seems miles and miles away."
Britt continued by emphasizing all parents have to stand up and speak up, and without that, there isn't going to be anything left for our kids to fight for. She said now is the time to fight for our children, values, and the country we love.
The President of Parents Defending Education, Nicole Neily, spoke about how parents want to know what their children are being taught. She also brought up several points of concern occurring across the country. She mentioned that thousands of school districts around the country oversee millions of students, and they believe parents do not have the right to know their child's gender at school. She emphasized how illegal immigration creates a burden on the school systems, that anti-Semitic lessons are being taught, and that children are being discriminated against based on their race and sex.
Another parental rights advocate, Christine Tooine, asked a question about Title IX, which is the law that prevents discrimination against anyone based on sex to participate in education or any other federally funded activities. This law is mainly brought up when discussing transgender biological males participating in female sporting competitions. She said as a mother, she wants to ensure that children are protected as they participate in sports or use the bathroom at school.
Tuberville answered that Title IX has been around for nearly 50 years and has been the most successful thing he has seen. However, he said that what has been occurring recently with biological males participating in female sports is destroying one of the most successful things that have come out of the U.S. Senate. He said he has had bills on the floor voted down by Democrats that deal with this exact issue and that "It just doesn't make any sense."
Britt also weighed in by saying that her daughter plays multiple sports and thinks about the safety and unfair competition of males in female sports.
"I look back over the campaign, and this became an issue where we said the boys' locker room should be for the boys and the girls' locker room for the girls," she said.
Britt said she had multiple young women as young as nine years old come to thank her for ensuring their locker room was safe.
Britt added this should be common sense and that each of the members on the panel had either been a sponsor or co-sponsor of a bill that dealt with this issue.
Tuberville added that these issues were not a priority of the Democrat leadership in the Senate.
Instead of tackling this issue or immigration, Democrats are currently focusing on banning menthol cigarettes and Zyn nicotine pouches while children are overdosing on fentanyl, he said. "It makes no sense, no sense whatsoever."
Tuberville concluded, "Parents are the most powerful voices in this country, and you have to speak up. We got a [Republican] Governor in Virginia because he spoke up because the school board said that they are going to control the students. The [Democrat] Governor running against him said that the parents don't control the students we do, and he got his tail beat — and he should have — because parents are responsible for their kids."
Watch the full roundtable video below.
WATCH LIVE: Coach Tuberville leads roundtable on education and parents’ rights. https://t.co/gGukXu0X4H— Coach Tommy Tuberville (@SenTuberville) January 24, 2024
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