Action Needed on HB23-1003 School Mental Health Assessment!
On April 13th , the day of CHEC’s Homeschool Day at the Capitol, HB23-1003 School Mental Health
Assessment was heard in the Senate Health & Human Services committee. Several homeschool families
were able to testify against this bill in committee.
For several weeks leading up to the committee hearing, CHEC’s Director of Government Relations
worked to get the bill amended to ensure that parents would be notified if the screening identified an
immediate mental health concern. Just before the committee hearing, the Senator who was working on
the amendments let us know that the amendments did not have the enough votes to pass. But God had
other plans. During the committee, after laying out the problem with the bill, line by line, enabling the
committee to see the problem, they were more than willing to pass a clarifying amendment. Praise God!
The bill now goes before the full Senate for a vote. Contact your Senator (find them here) and ask them to vote no on this bill!
**Many in the legislature believe you are a barrier to your child’s mental health! Listen here.**
Parental rights are the bedrock of home education! Those rights are being eroded away in law every year and parents are being replaced in their children’s lives by agents of the state. HB23-1003 School Mental Health Assessment strips parents of their ability to opt out of intrusive mental health screenings and gives children the authority to override parental consent and to deny parents notification of any mental health concerns.
As homeschoolers, we must defend the fundamental right of parents to direct the upbringing, care, and education of their children without government interference or control. Don’t be deceived into thinking we are safe from the long arm of the state just because we don’t interact with the school system! If they believe parents are barriers to a child’s well-being, how long do you think it will be before they come after us?
If you have any questions, please reach out to email@example.com!
Parental rights are being undermined in Colorado!
God created the family and gave parents the authority to care, nurture, and educate them. The state is continually encroaching in on the jurisdiction of the family. See this document from 2014 and this issue brief for information concerning where the state has already taken parental authority away and given it to children.
The state must be stopped from infringing on parental rights before there are none left, including the freedom to educate your children without government control.
Colorado Law on Parental Rights:
Colorado CRS 13-22-107(1)(a)(III) Parents have a fundamental right and responsibility to make decisions concerning the care, custody, and control of their children. The law has long presumed that parents act in the best interest of their children.
SCOTUS on Parental Rights:
The child is not the mere creature of the State; those who nurture him and direct his destiny have the right, coupled with the high duty, to recognize and prepare him for additional obligations. - Pierce v. Society of Sisters, 268 U.S. 510 (1925)
It is cardinal with us that the custody, care and nurture of the child reside first in the parents, whose primary function and freedom include preparation for obligations the state can neither supply nor hinder…It is in recognition of this that these decisions have respected the private realm of family life which the state cannot enter. - Prince v. Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 321 U.S. 158 (1944)
Our decisions establish that the Constitution protects the sanctity of the family precisely because the institution of the family is deeply rooted in this Nation's history and tradition. It is through the family that we inculcate and pass down many of our most cherished values, moral and cultural. - Moore v. East Cleveland, 431 U.S. 494 (1977)
The law's concept of the family rests on a presumption that parents possess what a child lacks in maturity, experience, and capacity for judgment required for making life's difficult decisions. More important, historically it has recognized that natural bonds of affection lead parents to act in the best interests of their children.
The statist notion that governmental power should supersede parental authority in all cases because some parents abuse and neglect children is repugnant to American tradition.
Simply because the decision of a parent is not agreeable to a child or because it involves risks does not automatically transfer the power to make that decision from the parents to some agency or officer of the state. - Parham v. J. R., 442 U.S. 584 (1979)
What is in the bill? Updated 4-19-23
- Universal mental health screenings by a third-party screener to be chosen by the Behavioral Health Administration (BHA).
Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE).
- Children are being encouraged to dishonor and deceive their family.
- Even if a parent opts their child out of the screening, the child can override their parent’s decision.
- Children must give consent for a parent to be notified if a mental health concern is found.
Even though it says parents will be immediately notified if a child is found to have a serious mental health issue, other parts of the bill contradict that provision.
- Mental health data will be placed in a student’s record and will follow them into their further educational pursuits.
- If mental health concerns are found, they will be labeled and referred for disability and special education services.
SchoolsThe screeners will be able toshall report parents for suspicions of abuse/neglect based on the results of the screening to the county department of human or social services, a local law enforcement agency, or through the child abuse reporting hotline system.
- Third-party screener will keep all the screening data and will be able to distribute it for research purposes.
- Children will be referred to mental health services by the screener.
the state’s iMatter program which provides six free therapy sessions with state-approved providers without parental consent or knowledge.