School Health Advisory Councils (SHAC) in Texas are required to meet four times a year. Some SHACs have additional council, committee, and subcommittee meetings. Consider contacting your school district to get on the Council. Ask for a copy of the By Laws and ask members about the commitment time required.
“(d-1) The local school health advisory council shall meet at least four times each year.”
A SHAC is a School Health Advisory Council. Every school district in the State of Texas must have a SHAC. This committee of citizens provides recommendations to School District Trustees regarding Human Sexuality Instruction.
Texas Education Code 28.004 outlines the requirements for the SHAC. Each SHAC may have By Laws in addition to Mission Statements, Values, Purpose documents, Meeting Norms, and sometimes Standing Rules.
- SHAC Documents do not need to restate Texas Education Code 28.004.
- School District and SHAC governing documents may not contradict Texas Education Code 28.004.
Generally, SHAC By Laws and Parent/Student Handbooks reference and/or quote Texas Education Code 28.004.
1) Opt Out Campaign
Parents shouldn’t abdicate to communal sex education to the school. Encourage parents to Opt Out. This effort needs to include informing and empowering parents to talk with their children.
2) Cease and Desist Campaign
Sometimes asking a school district to Cease and Desist teaching the current SRR program requires us to do a Repeal SRR and Replace with SRA Campaign. We have to speak firmly for the healthiest choices even in public policy. There are good SRA programs available. We also have to work to require teachers to attest to the abstinence education requirements in Texas Education Code 28.004 not just during Human Sexuality Instruction but throughout the school day.
3) Take Back the SHAC
The Texas Freedom Network has a SHAC Initiative to infiltrate School Health Advisory Councils in districts to recommend CSE. We have to fight at the local level to inform Trustees and get parents on the SHAC. Some Trustees have to be replaced, so during the election cycles we should ask the following questions of candidates:
- Are you prolife?
- Do you recognize a conflict of interest with abortion providers or affiliates providing curriculum or instruction in the schools?
- Will you support Sexual Risk Avoidance(SRA) programs rather than Sexual Risk Reduction(SRR), in other words, consistent with how school districts handle all risky behaviors?