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05/24/2005 Archived Entry: "Leave My Child Alone"

I urge every parent who sends a child to public high school to protect their child(ren) from the provision in the Leave No Child Behind Act which requires the school to turn over student information to military recruiters. You can opt your child(ren) out of submitting that information but, to do so, you must follow a set procedure. The Leave My Child Alone site provides a form letter but -- oddly enough for a site that purports to champion privacy -- they require your email address even though they don't send you the letter via email. So much for their interest in privacy. I offer an example of the form letter below. Or download your own form letter in .pdf. You can find your school superintendent's contact info by clicking here.

Leave My Child Alone
May 23, 2005

To Superintendent and School Board
Superintendent Cheryl White
14901 South Inglewood Ave.
Lawndale, CA 90260

Dear Superintendent Cheryl White and Board,

Section 9528 of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 requires schools to release our family's private information to military recruiters unless we "opt out" in writing.

   As a parent, I am exercising the right to request that you do not turn over the name, address, telephone listing and school records to the Armed Services, Military Recruiters, or Military Schools of the following student.

   As a student of the age of majority, I request my own name, address, telephone number and school records not be released to the Armed Forces, Military Recruiters, or Military Schools.

Student Name: Johnny Blow
Name of School: Some High School

Having defended my own family, I believe other families deserve protection as well. I object to releasing a family's private information to military recruiters without explicit written permission. This is an important student and family privacy issue, and I urge you to support a change in current law providing for an "opt in" policy where interested students and families can instead choose to request contact from military recruiters.

I urge you to do everything in your power to educate students and parents of their rights under Section 9528 (as it currently stands), and to make the process of opting out as straightforward as possible. Here are examples of district procedures I think exemplify the best practices in notification and opt out:

1. Publicize Opt Out policy at staff & family orientations, in publications, and on the school district's Web site

2. Attach Opt Out form to the school's required emergency information form, or print the Opt Out form as a standalone form, and require its return as part of student registration

3. Translate the Opt Out form into multiple languages, as appropriate for our school community


Signature              Date:        
Joe Blow 123 Main St. Disneyland, CA 90250 213-555-1212

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