Legislature(2015 - 2016)CAPITOL 106

03/14/2016 08:00 AM EDUCATION

Note: the audio and video recordings are distinct records and are obtained from different sources. As such there may be key differences between the two. The audio recordings are captured by our records offices as the official record of the meeting and will have more accurate timestamps. Use the icons to switch between them.

Download Mp3. <- Right click and save file as
Download Video part 1. <- Right click and save file as

Audio Topic
08:01:29 AM Start
08:02:12 AM SB89
10:02:31 AM Adjourn
* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
+ SB 89 SCHOOLS;PARENT RTS;ABORT. PROVDRS LIMITS TELECONFERENCED
Heard & Held
+= HB 156 SCHOOL ACCOUNTABILITY MEASURES; FED. LAW TELECONFERENCED
Scheduled but Not Heard
+ Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled TELECONFERENCED
        SB 89-SCHOOLS: PARENT RTS; ABORT. PROVDRS LIMITS                                                                    
                [Contains discussion of SB 191]                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
8:02:12 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER announced that the first order of business would be                                                                
SENATE BILL NO. 89 "An Act relating to a parent's right to                                                                      
direct the education of a child; and relating to questionnaires                                                                 
administered in schools."                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:03:03 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHRISTA MCDONALD, Staff, presented CSSB 89(RLS) am(efd add),                                                                    
paraphrasing from the sponsor statement, which read [original                                                                   
punctuation provided]:                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     The purpose  of CSSB  89 Parental Rights  in Education,                                                                    
     is to  codify in state  statute the inherent  rights of                                                                    
     parents  to  direct  the upbringing  and  education  of                                                                    
     their children.  As parents are the  ultimate authority                                                                    
     regarding  their  children,  this bill  requires  local                                                                    
     school  boards  to  adopt policies  which  promote  the                                                                    
     involvement  of parents.  A  child's  parents (be  they                                                                    
     biological or not)  are, in most cases,  best suited to                                                                    
     understand what  is in their child's  best interest. It                                                                    
     may seem  unnecessary that  this would  need to  be re-                                                                    
     stated  in  law.  However, too  often  we  see  parents                                                                    
     pitted  against   government  in   decisions  regarding                                                                    
     children's   education  and   upbringing.  I   am  thus                                                                    
     sponsoring this  bill to re-balance  that relationship.                                                                    
     I  feel it  essential  to ensure  that our  educational                                                                    
     system  acknowledges the  essential rights  of parents,                                                                    
     and that  schools adopt policies to  encourage parental                                                                    
     involvement.  These   policies  must   accommodate  the                                                                    
     following:                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
       Parents will  be given the  chance to  review content                                                                    
     of  any  activity,   class,  performance  standard,  or                                                                    
     program                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
       Parents can object to and  withdraw children from any                                                                    
     standards-based  assessment  or  test required  by  the                                                                    
     state, and the absence cannot be counted as unlawful                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
       If parents  have a concern about  any activity, class                                                                    
     or  program that  covers human  reproduction or  sexual                                                                    
     matters, or  which inquiries  into personal  or private                                                                    
     family affairs,  they can object  and keep  their child                                                                    
     out  of  that  particular  activity,  and  the  absence                                                                    
     cannot be counted as unlawful                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
       Parents  will be  allowed  to  withdraw children  for                                                                    
     religious holidays,  and the absence cannot  be counted                                                                    
     as unlawful                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
       Parents  must   provide  written   permission  before                                                                    
     children  may attend  each  human  reproduction or  sex                                                                    
     education instruction or presentation                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Existing  law  requires   parents  to  provide  written                                                                    
     permission  before   students  take  part   in  certain                                                                    
     questionnaires  and  surveys administered  by  schools.                                                                    
     This   bill    extends   that   requirement    to   all                                                                    
     questionnaires and surveys  administered by schools. As                                                                    
     the  stewards  of  their   children,  parents  must  be                                                                    
     guaranteed the  right to make  the decisions  they feel                                                                    
     are  best for  their  children's  education. I  request                                                                    
     your support for CSSB 89.                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD paraphrased from the sectional analysis, which read                                                                
[original punctuation provided]:                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     Section  1.  Requires  local  school  boards  to  adopt                                                                    
     policies  allowing parents  to withdraw  their children                                                                    
     from any  activity, class, program,  or standards-based                                                                    
     assessment required  by the state  to which  the parent                                                                    
     objects.  Requires  written   permission  from  parents                                                                    
     before  activities,  classes,   or  programs  on  human                                                                    
     reproduction  or  sexual  matters  are  provided  to  a                                                                    
     child.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Section  2.  Clarifies   that  "human  reproduction  or                                                                    
     sexual   matters"  does   not   include  curricula   or                                                                    
     materials   for  sexual   abuse   and  sexual   assault                                                                    
     awareness  training  required  under  AS  14.30.355  or                                                                    
     dating  violence  and  abuse awareness  and  prevention                                                                    
     training as required under AS 14.30.356.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Section   3.   Prohibits   a   school   district   from                                                                    
     contracting with an abortion services provider.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     Section 4.  Prohibits school districts from  paying the                                                                    
     costs of physical examinations for teachers.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     Section 5.  Prohibits school districts  from permitting                                                                    
     abortion  services  providers  to  offer,  sponsor,  or                                                                    
     furnish  course  materials  or instruction  related  to                                                                    
     human sexuality or sexually transmitted diseases.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     Section  6.  Provides an  effective  date  of June  30,                                                                    
     2017.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:06:44 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND noted  that  Sec.  1 addresses  policies                                                               
pertaining  to  student  withdraw requests  from  state  required                                                               
assessments,  and  asked  if  it  applies  to  district  required                                                               
assessments, as well.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD  said the intent  is to ensure parental  rights, and                                                               
allow parents to consider permission for singular activities.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
8:07:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON referred  to the  bill page  1, lines  13,                                                               
which read:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     ... object to and withdraw the child from a standards-                                                                     
     based assessment or test required by the state;                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON   asked  for  clarity  regarding   how  an                                                               
assessment  might  be  required  by the  state,  but  under  this                                                               
language  the test  isn't required.   He  questioned whether  the                                                               
state policy should be to suggest administering an assessment.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MCDONALD  offered that  a  school  district is  required  to                                                               
administer certain  state tests, such  as the Alaska  Measures of                                                               
Proficiency  (AMP), but  parents aren't  compelled to  have their                                                               
child attend during the assessment period.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON asked:                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     The question is then, if  students are required to take                                                                    
     the test, then this doesn't  override.  But if only the                                                                    
     districts are  required to administer  a test,  but the                                                                    
     student's  aren't required  to take  the test  by state                                                                    
     law,  then  this  bill,  as  you're  saying,  will  not                                                                    
     override  the requirement  that the  students take  the                                                                    
     test.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD  responded that  it does not  propose to  override a                                                               
state requirement for  a district to provide an  assessment.  She                                                               
conjectured  that there  are no  laws requiring  parents to  have                                                               
their child take a state assessment.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  referred to  the bill  page 2,  lines 4-7,                                                               
which read:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     (3)  providing for  parent notification  not less  than                                                                    
     two weeks  before any activity, class,  or program that                                                                    
     includes  content   involving  human   reproduction  or                                                                    
     sexual  matters is  provided to  a child  and requiring                                                                    
     written permission  from the child's parent  before the                                                                    
     child  may  participate  in  the  activity,  class,  or                                                                    
     program;                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  questioned why the topic  of human biology                                                               
is  acceptable  in the  classroom,  but  the curriculum  covering                                                               
human  reproduction is  singled  out  to allow  a  student to  be                                                               
withdrawn.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MCDONALD  cited constituent  requests  to  be notified  when                                                               
human  reproduction,  and  sexual  matters, are  covered  in  the                                                               
classroom.  Although  notification is already a  practice at some                                                               
schools,  it's   the  sponsor's  intent  to   expand  the  policy                                                               
statewide.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON   agreed  with  the   appropriateness  for                                                               
parental  notification,  however,  requiring  written  permission                                                               
prior to a  student participating in a basic  human biology class                                                               
seems incongruent, and he questioned  having it segregated in the                                                               
bill.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD  responded that  the intent is  to allow  parent's a                                                               
preview of  what is being  offered in the classroom,  rather than                                                               
after the fact.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:11:58 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SPOHNHOLZ  asked if evidence exists  that students                                                               
are taking part in sex education without parental knowledge.                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD  reported that  calls have  been fielded  from upset                                                               
parents indicating  that it  has occurred.   She noted  that some                                                               
districts do a better job than  others, and this bill will ensure                                                               
that all districts comply equally.                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SPOHNHOLZ  asked whether the schools  that are not                                                               
upholding good  practices are undergoing policy  review regarding                                                               
parental notification.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD answered yes, but practices  vary due to the lack of                                                               
a state standard, which underscores the need for the bill.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:13:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER  indicated  interest  in  knowing  what  the  state                                                               
standard  is,   if  one  exists,  for   notification  of  parents                                                               
regarding all curriculum.  Parents  should have an opportunity to                                                               
review curriculum for  each grade level.  He  posed the question:                                                               
What is the process for disseminating curriculum information.                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD deferred.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:14:22 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON referred  to the bill page  2, lines 11-12,                                                               
which read:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
      (5) providing a parent with an opportunity to review                                                                      
         the content of an activity, class, performance                                                                         
     standard, or program;                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON asked if parental,  subject review is being                                                               
proposed  as a  once per  year opportunity,  or would  individual                                                               
activity plans,  for any  class, need  to be  provided throughout                                                               
the year.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD  answered that the  schedule isn't specified  in the                                                               
bill and  departmental regulation  would need to  be promulgated.                                                               
The  language is  meant to  ensure  that parents  are allowed  an                                                               
opportunity to  review curriculum, and possibly  plan for opt-out                                                               
situations.                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  noted that it  could create a burden  on a                                                               
district in administering the withdrawal  requests.  He suggested                                                               
that  the  proposed  language  may  be  too  broad  in  scope  to                                                               
implement effectively and may need refinement.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:16:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DRUMMOND referred to the  bill page 2, lines 11-12                                                               
[previously read  on the record].   She reported  having reviewed                                                               
the K-12  policies for the  Anchorage School District  (ASD), and                                                               
paraphrased from the policy, which read:                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     At the secondary levels,  explicit parent permission is                                                                    
     not required,  but notice, access to  advance review of                                                                    
     materials  and   an  opt-out   opportunity  is   to  be                                                                    
     provided.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND opined  that the  proposed language  may                                                               
become onerous, and  paraphrased from the bill page  2, lines 23-                                                               
25, which read:                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     The policies adopted under (a)(3)  of this section must                                                                    
     require  written  permission  from the  child's  parent                                                                    
     before  each separate  activity, class,  or program  is                                                                    
     provided  to a  child that  includes content  involving                                                                    
     human reproduction or sexual matters.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND  inquired  whether  this  means  that  a                                                               
series of  five lessons,  covered over a  two week  period, would                                                               
require five  notices, not  less than two  weeks in  advance, for                                                               
each of the five lessons.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MCDONALD  responded that  the  described  scenario would  be                                                               
considered a class, and require only one notice.                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DRUMMOND  maintained her  concern that it  will be                                                               
an onerous  requirement on school  districts to track  the opt-in                                                               
forms and make determinations regarding  the absence of a student                                                               
on a given day.                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:18:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON referred  to  the bill  page  2, line  13,                                                               
where the truancy and attendance  standards will be effected.  In                                                               
an  opt-out  withdrawal situation,  he  asked  whether the  child                                                               
would  be expected  to attend  school on  that day,  and only  be                                                               
excused from the one class.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD said the intention is  for a student to be withdrawn                                                               
for the specific class, but attend school for the day.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON asked for  clarity on the practicality, and                                                               
facilitation, of  a student  excused on an  opt-out waiver  for a                                                               
specific class.   Would the  school provide other  activities for                                                               
any and all students that are  attending on an opt-out waiver, he                                                               
questioned,  and  pondered that  they  may  be  opting out  of  a                                                               
lengthy assessment scheduled for the bulk of the day.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MCDONALD offered  to provide  additional information  on the                                                               
workings of the current policy.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON said  notwithstanding the current policies,                                                               
it's  important to  understand how  the  proposed language  would                                                               
change the practice.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:20:45 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE DRUMMOND  asked what the withdrawn  students might                                                               
be engaged in doing, while sitting out a specific class.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD offered to provide additional information.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:21:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  noted that SB  89 enumerates a  variety of                                                               
reasons for approved withdrawal of  a student from class, but the                                                               
bill doesn't include parental rights  language for a child not to                                                               
be  enrolled  in public  education.    He  asked whether  it  was                                                               
inadvertently  excluded.   There  are a  number  of reasons  that                                                               
parents  can  refrain  from  sending  their  student  to  school,                                                               
including religious  reasons, and  he pondered whether  this bill                                                               
might generate an  additional list of reasons that  a student may                                                               
not attend school.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD offered to provide additional information.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:23:50 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SPOHNHOLZ  asked for clarity regarding  the intent                                                               
of the bill.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MCDONALD  identified  two  distinct  aspects  of  the  bill:                                                               
allowing  parents  the opportunity  to  object  to certain  class                                                               
content,  which  is  a reiteration  of  current  parental  rights                                                               
available via the  opt-out policy; and requiring  parents to opt-                                                               
in, as an additional measure of notification.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SPOHNHOLZ referred to the bill page 2, lines 23-                                                                 
25,  [previously  read  on  the  record],  which  specifies  that                                                               
individual,  separate permission  slips would  be required.   The                                                               
bill appears  to be establishing  a high standard  for permission                                                               
slip  usage on  the  part  of both  the  parents  and the  school                                                               
districts.   If  the  intent  is to  ensure  the opportunity  for                                                               
parents to opt-out,  additional attention may need  to be focused                                                               
on [lines 23-25].                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MCDONALD  said  the  expectation is  not  lofty,  given  the                                                               
permission  slip   usage  already  practiced  for   a  myriad  of                                                               
situations.   The opt-in could  be satisfied at the  beginning of                                                               
each year, she suggested.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:26:53 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  pointed out that  two phrases in  the bill                                                               
may  conflict,  and  directed  attention   to  page  2,  line  6,                                                               
paragraph (3),  and page  2 line 23,  subsection (b),  which read                                                               
respectively:                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     (3)  ...  and  requiring written  permission  from  the                                                                    
     child's parent before the child  may participate in the                                                                    
     activity, class, or program;                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     (b) The  policies adopted under (a)(3)  of this section                                                                    
     must  require  written   permission  from  the  child's                                                                    
     parent  before   each  separate  activity,   class,  or                                                                    
     program ...                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON expressed  interest  in understanding  how                                                               
one  permission form  would be  sufficient to  cover a  course of                                                               
five  classes  that  are  given   over  a  two  week  period,  as                                                               
previously  testified, given  that  this  language requires  that                                                               
"each separate activity," must be  noticed.  He asked for further                                                               
clarity on the sponsor's intent.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:28:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON referred  to the bill page  3, lines 14-19,                                                               
which read:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Sec. 4. AS 14.30 is amended  by adding a new section to                                                                    
     read:                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     14.30.075.  Physical examinations  for teachers.  (a) A                                                                    
     school  district may  require physical  examinations of                                                                    
     teachers  as  a  condition   of  employment.  A  school                                                                    
     district may not pay the  cost of physical examinations                                                                    
     for  teachers.   This  section  does  not   affect  the                                                                    
     coverage  of  any  health  insurance  benefits  that  a                                                                    
     school district provides to teachers.                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON referred to Sec.  4 and asked whether it is                                                               
meant to establish a policy for  teachers to pay for a background                                                               
check,  and fingerprints,  during  the employment  process.   The                                                               
language only mentions the physical  exams, which are presumed to                                                               
be for  the same employment  reasons.   He noted that  the fiscal                                                               
note  doesn't  indicate costs  to  the  state, and  he  requested                                                               
further  details, including  what the  physical examination  as a                                                               
condition of employment would encompass.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD agreed to provide further information.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
8:30:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ said  the  bill  specifically does  not                                                               
allow  abortion services  providers  to  supply sexual  education                                                               
information   to   school   districts,  and   asked   whether   a                                                               
comprehensive  list  of  sexual   education  providers  has  been                                                               
compiled.    She  clarified that  if  specific  sexual  education                                                               
providers  are  excluded, what  providers  are  allowed that  are                                                               
equally qualified to deliver the  curriculum, as required by many                                                               
districts in the state.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD  answered that several  districts use  public health                                                               
nurses, which would  not be effected by the bill,  and she agreed                                                               
to provide a comprehensive resource list.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ asked  if  it is  the sponsor's  intent                                                               
that  public  health  nurses  be   the  sex  education  providers                                                               
throughout the state.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
MS.   MCDONALD   said  the   intent   is   to  disallow   outside                                                               
organizations from entering  classrooms and providing information                                                               
that  may advocate  for  a certain  viewpoint.   A  teacher or  a                                                               
school  nurse  would  both  be  considered  appropriate  and  the                                                               
districts would make that decision for their schools.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ noted  that, although  the fiscal  note                                                               
indicates zero  costs, funds may  be required  for redistributing                                                               
the responsibility for this area  of education, and asked to have                                                               
a  list of  sexual education  providers throughout  the state  to                                                               
understand the scope of the potential expense.                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:33:48 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR  KELLER   clarified  the  language  that   the  member  was                                                               
addressing,  and  asked  whether   she  is  requesting  that  all                                                               
districts be polled; to wit bill page 3, line 12, which read:                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     (e)  A  school  district and  an  educational  services                                                                    
     organization  that   has  a  contract  with   a  school                                                                    
     district  may not  contract with  an abortion  services                                                                    
     provider.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SPOHNHOLZ confirmed  subsection (e)  had prompted                                                               
her questions.   She  said a complete  polling is  not necessary,                                                               
however, it  would need to be  a large enough sample  to attain a                                                               
sense  of  practical solutions  that  may  be implemented  versus                                                               
using the existing contractors.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:34:59 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON referred  to the bill page  3, lines 21-25,                                                               
which read:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Sec.  5.  AS  14.30.360  is amended  by  adding  a  new                                                                    
     subsection to read:                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     (c)  A  school  district  may not  permit  an  abortion                                                                    
     services  provider or  an employee  or volunteer  of an                                                                    
     abortion services  provider to offer,  sponsor, furnish                                                                    
     course  materials, or  provide instruction  relating to                                                                    
     human sexuality or sexually transmitted diseases.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON  asked  how  SB   89  is  not  a  bill  of                                                               
attainder.  [The  text  of  the  U.S.  Constitution,  Article  I,                                                               
Section 9; Clause 3  is:  "No Bill of Attainder  or ex post facto                                                               
Law  shall  be passed".  The  constitution  of every  state  also                                                               
expressly forbids bills of attainder.]                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
MS. MCDONALD offered to provide  further information.  She stated                                                               
that  it  is well  within  the  legislature's responsibility  and                                                               
authority to  determine what is  provided to students,  and cited                                                               
AS 14.03.090, which reads:                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     Sec.    14.03.090.        Partisan,    sectarian,    or                                                                    
     denominational   doctrines   prohibited.      Partisan,                                                                    
     sectarian,  or  denominational  doctrines  may  not  be                                                                    
     advocated  in  a public  school  during  the hours  the                                                                    
     school  is  in session.    A  teacher or  school  board                                                                    
     violating this section may not receive public money.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:36:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  pointed out  that a  bill of  attainder is                                                               
unconstitutional,  and explained  how  it relates  to this  bill,                                                               
recalling  scenarios   from  the   early  days   of  confederacy.                                                               
Although Planned Parenthood  is no longer named in  the bill, the                                                               
language is specific  to that group, and it may  become a federal                                                               
issue.  He asked to have the concern addressed.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:38:14 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  DRUMMOND, regarding  the  question  of who  might                                                               
facilitate  classes  and  information   on  human  sexuality  and                                                               
reproduction, conjectured  that it  may be a  public nurse.   She                                                               
asked  whether a  nurse  would be  questioned  on their  personal                                                               
perspective  regarding abortion,  and would  that information  be                                                               
made a requirement for providing of the course.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
MS.  MCDONALD  responded  that  the  bill  does  not  require  an                                                               
individual  teacher's views  to be  assessed, or  those of  other                                                               
providers of sex education information.                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
8:39:56 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SEATON  referred to  the bill  page 1,  line [12],                                                               
which read:                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     (1) recognizing the authority of  a parent and allowing                                                                    
     a parent  to object  to and withdraw  the child  from a                                                                    
     standards-based  assessment  or  test required  by  the                                                                    
     state;                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  SEATON  asked whether  it  the  intention of  the                                                               
sponsor  to  exercise  override  of  federal  requirements.    He                                                               
queried whether the opt-out  provision includes state assessments                                                               
that are  administered in  compliance with  federal requirements.                                                               
Non-compliance,  may  result  in  loss  of  federal  funding,  he                                                               
recalled.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER offered to have  EED present at a subsequent meeting                                                               
for questioning.                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER opened public testimony                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
8:42:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ANNA  MERIDETH,  Manager,  Youth Health  and  Education  Program,                                                               
Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic,  stated opposition to SB 89,                                                               
and said her  work is handled in  conjunction with professionally                                                               
trained peer education teams  who facilitate school presentations                                                               
on  a  variety  of  topics,   including:    sexuality  education,                                                               
bullying,  suicide prevention,  resiliency and  adverse childhood                                                               
experiences, depression  and mental health, and  many other youth                                                               
development  subjects.    She said  the  opt-in  permission  note                                                               
requirement presents  a significant  problem.  Over  250 students                                                               
are  currently completing  sexual  education  training in  Homer.                                                               
The  opt-out  provision  was available  to  their  parent's,  and                                                               
worked  well  for  the  2-3 students  whose  families  made  that                                                               
choice.   Reversing policy to  an opt-in requirement,  means that                                                               
the other 248 students would have  needed to provide staff with a                                                               
signed  parental  permission  note,   which  would  result  in  a                                                               
burdensome oversite  situation, she predicted.   A large majority                                                               
of the teenagers would be unable  to benefit from the class under                                                               
the  requirement,   particularly  teens  who  are   homeless,  in                                                               
transition, or  those whose living  situations present  an unsafe                                                               
parental relationship, she said.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
8:45:16 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MARY  LOU KELSEY,  Certified Nurse  (CN), Midwife,  Homer Medical                                                               
Center,  stated opposition  to SB  89,  and relayed  her 35  year                                                               
history   for   delivery   of   children,   reproductive   health                                                               
counseling,  parenthood  planning,  and  as  a  volunteer  school                                                               
sexual   education  provider.      The  bill   could  result   in                                                               
criminalizing the activity she engages  in as a medical provider,                                                               
as   well  as   depriving  students   of  accurate,   non-biased,                                                               
comprehensive, and essential information.                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:47:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KATE  FINN,  Registered  Nurse  (RN),  Nurse  Practitioner  (NP),                                                               
Midwife,  stated opposition  to SB  89, and  echoed the  previous                                                               
witness's sentiments,  and added that  a movement referred  to as                                                               
denying  Americans  the right  to  know  (DARK) is  sweeping  the                                                               
nation  and causing  concern.   Students have  the right  to know                                                               
their options,  she stressed, and  make personal  choices drawing                                                               
on  an informed  knowledge  base.   If they  don't  know what  is                                                               
available and all the options, the situation is DARK.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:49:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ALYISON CURREY, Representative,  Planned Parenthood Votes, stated                                                               
opposition  to SB  89, paraphrasing  from  a prepared  statement,                                                               
which read [original punctuation provided]:                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Alaska   has  an   epidemic  of   sexually  transmitted                                                                    
     infections  as well  as sexual  assault and  abuse, and                                                                    
     our   youth    need   access    to   medically-accurate                                                                    
     information  to  make  healthy  decisions  about  their                                                                    
     lives.   Planned Parenthood has  been a  trusted expert                                                                    
     and  provider   of  medically-accurate   sexual  health                                                                    
     education  in  Alaska  for  more   than  20  years  and                                                                    
     throughout the country for 100.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     When  invited, Planned  Parenthood  works closely  with                                                                    
     some schools and other  social service organizations in                                                                    
     communities  across  the  state,  including  Fairbanks,                                                                    
     Juneau, the  Kenai Peninsula, Anchorage and  the Mat-Su                                                                    
     Valley.    We provide  direct  education  to over  2000                                                                    
     youth  each year  and have  also provided  training and                                                                    
     skill  building for  staff  working  with youth  around                                                                    
     healthy  sexuality and  prevention.  This has  included                                                                    
     teacher training and school based nurse training.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     Our  curriculum has  been vetted  and  approved by  the                                                                    
     Office of  Adolescent Health  for medical  accuracy and                                                                    
     reviewed   by  local   school   staff  for   curriculum                                                                    
     alignment, as well as  age and cultural appropriateness                                                                    
     to fit the needs of  each community.  Additionally, our                                                                    
     education programs aim  to complement the conversations                                                                    
     that happen at home with  families, they do not replace                                                                    
     them.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     SB  89 purports  to be  about parental  rights, but  it                                                                    
     strips the  rights of parents and  communities who want                                                                    
     their   children   to   receive   accurate,   unbiased,                                                                    
     evidence-based   information  from   expert  educators.                                                                    
     This bill  unfairly targets providers of  abortion, who                                                                    
     are  also trained  sexual health  educators, and  would                                                                    
     cut many  Alaska students off  from the  education they                                                                    
     need to stay healthy and safe.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Instead  of creating  more  barriers  to education  and                                                                    
     limiting districts'  options for local  programming, we                                                                    
     should  be working  together to  ensure that  our youth                                                                    
     have  the  resources  and information  needed  to  lead                                                                    
     healthy and  productive lives-SB  89 does  the opposite                                                                    
     and I respectfully ask that you oppose this bill.                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:52:28 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MELISSA ENGLE,  Reverend, Douglas Community and  United Methodist                                                               
Church, Juneau  Youth Ministry Cooperative, stated  opposition to                                                               
SB 89,  and said she finds  it dangerous for two  reasons.  First                                                               
she  said it  is an  attack on  Planned Parenthood,  which is  an                                                               
agency that the serves as a  partner in ministry for the teens of                                                               
the congregation.  The conversations  that the Planned Parenthood                                                               
Teen Council facilitated with the  teens of the church, could not                                                               
have happened  without the partnership.   Workshops  cover topics                                                               
from  puberty   through  comprehensive  medically   accurate  sex                                                               
education.   She described  her own experience,  based on  a fear                                                               
based video to ensure an  abstinence agreement that was presented                                                               
in  the  sixth grade.    Fifteen  years  later,  as part  of  her                                                               
ministry  work,   she  was  trained   in  the  Our   Whole  Lives                                                               
curriculum,  not  unlike   the  age  appropriate,  comprehensive,                                                               
medically  accurate, approach  that  the  Teen Council  provides.                                                               
The  difference   would  be  the  spiritual   supplement  of  the                                                               
religious  training.   She  relayed  that,  because of  a  recent                                                               
training course, she  realized that what she had  thought she was                                                               
practicing as abstinence wasn't, rather  it was an example of the                                                               
inappropriate instruction  she had initially received  in school,                                                               
which  required spiritual  reconciliation on  her part.   Planned                                                               
Parenthood appropriately  teaches abstinence,  as a  vital option                                                               
and important  facet to  protect.  She  stressed that  many young                                                               
people live  on the margins, and  the parent's may never  see the                                                               
permission slip,  which would  cause the student  to miss  out on                                                               
this  vital education.    Whatever choice  a  young person  makes                                                               
about their body, she said, let's support them being informed.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:55:44 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ALICIA  NORDAN, Student,  University of  Alaska Southeast  (UAS),                                                               
stated opposition  to SB  89, citing  her personal  experience of                                                               
speaking with students  from across the state  who lack essential                                                               
sexual  education.   The bill  will  make it  more difficult  for                                                               
students  to  receive  sex  education,  by  imposing  the  opt-in                                                               
requirement;  as  well  as  by  requiring  teachers  to  purchase                                                               
materials.   Further,  she concurred  with the  testimony of  the                                                               
previous speakers.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:56:46 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
TAYLOR MORGAN  stated opposition  to SB 89,  and pointed  out the                                                               
high  rate  of sexually  transmitted  infections  (STI's) in  the                                                               
state.   The education she  received, as an Alaskan  student, was                                                               
delivered by the  physical education teacher.   She reported that                                                               
it  was   biased  and  non-comprehensive,  versus   receiving  an                                                               
unbiased, medically  based curriculum.  Additionally,  she opined                                                               
that the  bill places  a burden on  educators by  restricting the                                                               
use  of  community  resources  for   providing  a  respected  sex                                                               
education curriculum.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:57:47 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SAMANTHA SAVAGE,  Student, stated opposition  to SB 89,  and said                                                               
that, as  someone who received  sex education in  Alaska's public                                                               
school  system,  efforts  should  be  directed  towards  creating                                                               
higher sex education standards and  for ensuring that the courses                                                               
are  comprehensive,  evidence   based,  and  medically  accurate,                                                               
rather than working to impose  restrictions on students, parents,                                                               
and school districts.  She said:                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     The  state of  Alaska  suffers from  epidemic rates  of                                                                    
     sexually  transmitted diseases,  high pregnancy  rates,                                                                    
     and  a  devastatingly  high rate  of  intimate  partner                                                                    
     violence  and  sexual assault.    Senate  bill 89  puts                                                                    
     barriers between  students receiving education  that is                                                                    
     very clearly  needed for our  population to  be healthy                                                                    
     and  free   from  violence.     Teachers   should  feel                                                                    
     empowered  to  use   their  professional  judgement  to                                                                    
     invite  the  most   qualified  individuals  into  their                                                                    
     classrooms,  to speak  to their  classes about  special                                                                    
     topics, such  as sexual education.   Local  schools and                                                                    
     teachers  should  be in  control  of  who they  believe                                                                    
     should   be  allowed   in   schools,   not  the   state                                                                    
     legislature.    The  opt-in requirement  of  this  bill                                                                    
     unravels a key component  of the Alaska Safe Children's                                                                    
     Act, which  is highly  disturbing as our  state suffers                                                                    
     from high  rates of child  sexual abuse.   Passing this                                                                    
     bill would put  the most at-risk children  at an unfair                                                                    
     disadvantage  of receiving  key information  to protect                                                                    
     themselves and  others and cause  administrative stress                                                                    
     on already cash strapped school districts.                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
8:59:32 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MARJORIE RICHARDS, Registered Nurse  (RN), Board Member, Resource                                                               
Center for Parents and Children,  stated opposition to SB 89, and                                                               
said, as a  nurse who has worked with a  doctor of obstetrics and                                                               
gynecology  (OB/GYN),  it  would  be   ideal  if  there  were  no                                                               
unexpected  pregnancies, no  one contracted  STD's, sexual  abuse                                                               
did not occur,  and abortions were never necessary.   However, in                                                               
order for  young women and  men to make good  decisions regarding                                                               
sexual  health, expert  education and  resources are  imperative.                                                               
Most families  do not  provide the bulk  of education  that young                                                               
people need, she ventured to say.   She stated agreement with the                                                               
concerns expressed  for the  opt-in permission  slip requirement,                                                               
and said that it would  preclude the participation of many teens.                                                               
Currently less than  a quarter of Alaska's  secondary schools are                                                               
able  to  provide  the recommended  prevention  courses  covering                                                               
human   immunodeficiency   virus  (HIV),   sexually   transmitted                                                               
diseases (STD's), and pregnancy prevention topics.  She said:                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     The [State of  Alaska], you and I, pay for  most of the                                                                    
     cost  of  the  teen   births  in  Alaska,  through  the                                                                    
     Medicaid  program.     Local  communities  and  parents                                                                    
     should have the right  to invite trusted partners, like                                                                    
     Planned  Parenthood,   into  the  classroom,   if  they                                                                    
     choose.    Until  the  state   steps  up  in  providing                                                                    
     medically  accurate  sexual  health  education  to  all                                                                    
     students, communities  will rely on  Planned Parenthood                                                                    
     to provide  that information.   I feel that SB  89, and                                                                    
     SB 191,  go too far in  restricting medically accurate,                                                                    
     evidence    based,   non-judgmental,    sexual   health                                                                    
     education to its constituents in Alaska.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:02:30 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
BUTCH MOORE stated opposition to SB  89, and opined that the bill                                                               
is a poison  pill.  He suggested  that the intent of  the bill is                                                               
to  eliminate  the presence  of  Planned  Parenthood from  public                                                               
schools.  He agreed that abortion  should not be taught in public                                                               
schools.   The curricula of  every school district  is determined                                                               
at the  local level,  and having made  inquiries, he  assured the                                                               
committee  that  abortion is  not  being  taught in  any  Alaskan                                                               
schools.   Parents already  have the right  to opt  their student                                                               
out of any class, and changing  it to an opt-in requirement would                                                               
be  costly  as  well  as   illegal  and  prove  unconstitutional;                                                               
requiring  that a  fiscal note  be attached  to cover  litigation                                                               
costs, which  would be pursuant to  passage of SB 89  and SB 191.                                                               
The Alaska  Civil Liberties Union  (ACLU) has issued  a statement                                                               
[contained  in the  committee packet]  which  he recommended  the                                                               
committee review.   To not  allow abortion service  providers, or                                                               
their volunteers, to present education  in any schools in Alaska,                                                               
is like saying  that a liquor store that also  sells groceries is                                                               
barred from  food services to  any schools in Alaska;  a practice                                                               
of some  major grocery stores  that also  sell liquor.   In order                                                               
for a  minor to obtain  an abortion, in Alaska,  parental consent                                                               
is  required,  he  pointed  out.    Both  bills  single  out  and                                                               
eliminate  the use  of an  agency that  provides a  free service,                                                               
thus  putting an  undue  fiscal  burden on  schools,  as well  as                                                               
shifting   a  medical   education   curricula   to  a   medically                                                               
unqualified class teacher.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:07:31 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CINDY MOORE stated opposition to  SB 89, and asked the rhetorical                                                               
question of  whether this bill  will provide more or  less safety                                                               
to children.  She conjectured that  it would make them less safe.                                                               
The current  STD levels in Alaska  are the highest in  the nation                                                               
among  teenagers.    Parental review  of  curriculum  is  already                                                               
available, and  a choice  can be  made to  opt-out of  any class.                                                               
However,  the rights  of  teens is  being  circumvented and,  she                                                               
said, their rights should be a major consideration.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:09:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ERIC GLATT,  Attorney, American Civil  Liberties Union  (ACLU) of                                                               
Alaska, stated opposition  to SB 89, and opined that  the bill is                                                               
unconstitutional.   Although  not regulating  the content  of sex                                                               
education    classes,   it    does   restrict    the   providers.                                                               
Additionally, teachers  who offer sex education  would have their                                                               
free  time   restricted,  as  they   would  be   disallowed  from                                                               
volunteering at a clinic or other subjective venue.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:13:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CATHY  GIRARD  stated  opposition  to  SB  89,  and  relayed  the                                                               
impracticality  of the  early sex  education  that she  received.                                                               
The minimal  information that she  was privy to was  what brought                                                               
her to seek  support from Planned Parenthood and  to refrain from                                                               
becoming  sexually  active  as  a  teen.   She  said  that  as  a                                                               
grandparent she  supports unbiased sexual education,  provided by                                                               
qualified  professionals,   for  her  grandchildren.     Although                                                               
proposed as a  no cost bill, it will certainly  create a cost for                                                               
schools  to  take  over  providing   the  information,  which  is                                                               
currently free to  districts.  Finally, parents  already have the                                                               
right to exercise the opt-out provision.                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:17:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ELIJAH VERHAGEN  stated support  for SB  89, paraphrasing  from a                                                               
prepared statement, which read [original punctuation provided]:                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     I'm very grateful to the  sponsor of this bill who took                                                                    
     this critical  and heated issue  on. I'd like  to start                                                                    
     off  by  pointing out  to  the  committee members  that                                                                    
     almost  every single  person  that  I've heard  testify                                                                    
     before    me    today     has    either    a    special                                                                    
     interest/connection  they  mentioned,   was  a  Planned                                                                    
     Parenthood  employee  or  retired nurse  that's  worked                                                                    
     with   them    and   thus   are    Planned   Parenthood                                                                    
     sympathizers.  These  were  not  your  average  private                                                                    
     sector  individuals and  parents  taking  off work  and                                                                    
     calling in  because they are concerned  for their kids.                                                                    
     Most  of your  average  constituents  never hear  about                                                                    
     these bills being  up in committee until  it's too late                                                                    
     and even  if they did, most  would not be able  to take                                                                    
     off work from 8-10am to  testify. I only heard about it                                                                    
     because  I  used  to  work in  Juneau  and  still  have                                                                    
     friends  there that  let me  know  when important  bill                                                                    
     hearings are. So for those of  us that do take off work                                                                    
     and  call in,  our  testimony should  have  a lot  more                                                                    
     weight  than  these  PP  advocates,  ACLU  lawyers  and                                                                    
     whoever else  these third  party abortion  agencies can                                                                    
     afford  to get  here to  testify. You  know and  I know                                                                    
     (having worked in  Juneau for five years)  that most of                                                                    
     them  receive  mass  email  notifications  of  when  to                                                                    
     testify and many are paid to  call in or are flown into                                                                    
     Juneau to defeat good bills  like this that benefit our                                                                    
     kids and society.                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
     I'm frankly  appalled that Planned Parenthood  has been                                                                    
     allowed  to come  into our  public schools  as a  third                                                                    
     party and  teach sex education.  Where was this  in the                                                                    
     newspapers?  Sex education  needs to  be taught  to our                                                                    
     children  in  an  unbiased,  mature  and  trustful  way                                                                    
     primarily   by  parents.   The  government   should  be                                                                    
     encouraging  parents  to  do so,  not  stripping  their                                                                    
     parental  rights  away and  leaving  it  up to  Planned                                                                    
     Parenthood  or   any  other  third   party,  unfamiliar                                                                    
     source. Of course  not all parents care  sadly to teach                                                                    
     their  kids sex  education or  would rather  the school                                                                    
     does, that's fine  and their choice and  there are many                                                                    
     kids  without parents  who are  in public  schools that                                                                    
     will  learn sex  ed from  their teachers.  But this  is                                                                    
     where the kids can learn  from a teacher they know, not                                                                    
     a third party official who  they've never met, who then                                                                    
     hands  out   material  that  links  them   to  abortion                                                                    
     agencies.  Like  this  bill allows,  having  an  opt-in                                                                    
     signature  required from  parents at  the beginning  of                                                                    
     the school  year or  later before sex  ed is  taught to                                                                    
     their  children  is  leaving  the  authority  with  the                                                                    
     parents.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Finally to get my point  across and the severity of the                                                                    
     bill  I  will  share  an  analogy  of  what  it's  like                                                                    
     allowing Planned  Parenthood to teach our  kids sex ed.                                                                    
     Planned  Parenthood is  known  for providing  abortions                                                                    
     and  even  if  abortions  only  make  up  3%  of  their                                                                    
     services  like they  claim,  they  still are  providing                                                                    
     abortions which  is murder, there  is no  sugar coating                                                                    
     it. So allowing them to teach  sex ed and then give out                                                                    
     their info in  our schools is like  allowing a murderer                                                                    
     into our house to babysit  your kids because 97% of the                                                                    
     time,  the murder  isn't killing  anyone  and is  doing                                                                    
     good things.  Well 3% of  the time they  are committing                                                                    
     murder. You  would never let  them babysit and  we also                                                                    
     must  never   let  Planned  Parenthood  teach   in  our                                                                    
     schools.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     I  urge the  committee  members  to seriously  consider                                                                    
     what I'm  saying, reach out  to your  real constituents                                                                    
     and pass  this bill  out of  committee for  our society                                                                    
     and children's sake.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:20:58 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SCOTT NORD stated support for  SB 89, opining that parents should                                                               
be responsible  for their children's sexual  education.  Families                                                               
are the  most important  part of society,  and to  suggest having                                                               
government take  on the responsibility represents  a gross error,                                                               
he opined.   Without passage of SB 89 families  will lose control                                                               
and power.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:23:23 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
DAVID  LUNTZ stated  opposition to  SB  89, and  said the  opt-in                                                               
requirement will  be costly,  and reinforce  lazy parenting.   He                                                               
said it  is disturbing that  the legislature is placing  the name                                                               
of an organization  in the bill, which could set  a precedent for                                                               
other organizations  to be  named in  subsequent bills.   Because                                                               
someone is  a member  of an  organization, does  not mean  that a                                                               
professional  would  impose  personal   bias  on  students  in  a                                                               
classroom.  He said:                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     I think  we need to  stop trying to  impose religiously                                                                    
     based  ideas into  legislation ...  keep it  clean, and                                                                    
     ... not incur more legal fees.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:26:57 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
TOM  LAKOSH, stated  opposition  to  SB 89,  and  said given  the                                                               
fiscal situation  of the  state, this bill  does not  represent a                                                               
responsible  move; it  will lead  to  litigation.   Additionally,                                                               
restricting sexual  education may serve  to increase the  STD and                                                               
abortion levels in the state.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
9:28:27 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
HENRY SCHILDBACH,  Student, Highland Tech Charter  School, stated                                                               
opposition to  SB 89, and  said he is  a member of  Teen council,                                                               
which  is a  group of  teenagers who  are dedicated  to providing                                                               
comprehensive, medically  accurate, sexual education to  teens at                                                               
the Highland  Tech Charter School,  as well as to  schools within                                                               
the  district.   The members  of the  [peer led  sex ed]  program                                                               
receive extensive  training for  how to  educate other  teens and                                                               
how  to talk  to them  about sexual  and reproductive  health, as                                                               
well  as healthy  relationships.   The goal  of the  education is                                                               
prevention, and  to enable people  to live healthy,  happy lives.                                                               
Alaska  lacks a  standardized  sexual  education curriculum,  and                                                               
less than  a quarter  of the schools  teach the  recommended HIV,                                                               
STD, and  pregnancy courses, he  reported.  Alaska is  ranked 47,                                                               
with  only  three  other  states  receiving  less  sexual  health                                                               
education in public  schools; however, the state  does rank first                                                               
in levels of  chlamydia.  Teen pregnancies are also  on the rise,                                                               
he said, which indicates that  Alaska's approach to sex education                                                               
is  unacceptable.   Teacher's invite  Teen  Council, and  Planned                                                               
Parenthood, into their classrooms  to supplement lessons, filling                                                               
in  a gap  at  no cost  to  the school  district.   Studies  have                                                               
consistently shown that comprehensive  sex education is effective                                                               
in reducing  the levels  of STI's, delaying  the start  of sexual                                                               
activity, and  lowering teen  pregnancy rates.   The  solution to                                                               
Alaska's status for STD's and  teen pregnancies is more education                                                               
not less, he  reiterated.  Also, SB 89 turns  an established opt-                                                               
out system  into an  opt-in system,  he stressed,  destroying any                                                               
hope of Erin's Law and  comprehensive sex education from reaching                                                               
those who need it the most.   For a state with child sexual abuse                                                               
rates six  times higher  than the national  average, he  said the                                                               
senate should  be ashamed  to introduce  a bill  such as  this in                                                               
Alaska.   Teachers, students, and  communities rely  upon Planned                                                               
Parenthood   and   Teen   Council  to   provide   sex   education                                                               
information, and  its end  will be disastrous  to both  teens and                                                               
communities  already struggling  with education.   As  a teen,  a                                                               
constituent and a voice for his  peers, he said he was expressing                                                               
opposition to SB 89 and SB 191.                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
9:31:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JOSEPH   LEWIS,  Student,   Eagle  River   High  School,   stated                                                               
opposition  to SB  89, and  said he  is grateful  for the  sexual                                                               
education  classes,  which  he  has received.    Further,  he  is                                                               
supportive  that his  younger brother  will be  receiving similar                                                               
education.  Abortion is not  taught in the sex education classes,                                                               
the  focus  is  on  prevention   and  protection.    The  Planned                                                               
Parenthood representatives are helpful in prevention.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:34:04 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
GARY  SNYDER, Teacher,  Anchorage School  District (ASD),  stated                                                               
opposition to  SB 89 and  said his goal as  a teacher is  to help                                                               
improve the  lives of  his students,  assisting them  in becoming                                                               
productive members of society.   Additional sexual education, not                                                               
less, is necessary, he opined, and  SB 89 will serve as a barrier                                                               
to  that  end.   He  said,  as a  sex  education  teacher, he  is                                                               
responsible for  the parental  notifications, receiving  the opt-                                                               
out notices,  blogging with parents, and  other necessary actions                                                               
for course  implementation, thus, he is  intimately familiar with                                                               
the time and effort necessary to  administer the class.  The bill                                                               
will only add to a teacher's  work load, and discourage them from                                                               
taking  up  the  curriculum.   Having  spoken  with  hundreds  of                                                               
students, he said  the majority get very  little information from                                                               
their parents.   During informal  annual student polls,  taken in                                                               
class, he reported that 80  percent of the students indicate that                                                               
they  do not  receive sex  education from  their parents,  but do                                                               
resort to  on-line information, and other  inappropriate sources.                                                               
He offered national statistics:  11  is the average age for males                                                               
typing  porn into  the internet,  first intercourse  age averages                                                               
between  16 and  17,  and  60 percent  of  American students  are                                                               
sexually active  by age 18.   The  proposed bill will  not change                                                               
these figures,  but sex educators  like himself are trying  to by                                                               
providing students  with information and answers.   Sex education                                                               
in schools, serves to fill in  the gaps between the foreign world                                                               
and  real sexual  activity.   Important topics  that are  covered                                                               
include:    consequences  of  personal  sexual  decisions,  human                                                               
anatomy, hormonal functions,  pregnancy facts, consent, assertive                                                               
communication, how  to articulate personal values  regarding sex,                                                               
and  contraceptives.    Viewing  porn, will  not  teach  students                                                               
appropriate  behavior,   he  stressed,  and  stated   the  quote:                                                               
"People learning about  sex from porn, is like  learning to drive                                                               
by watching  [the movie]  FAST AND  FURIOUS."   Comprehensive sex                                                               
education  in  the  schools is  necessary,  he  underscored,  and                                                               
pointed  out that  parents may  review curriculum  and choose  to                                                               
remove their student from any lesson.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:37:52 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JAMES PRIMM  stated opposition to  SB 89, and said  it represents                                                               
out-of-touch  legislation,  that  will   not  allow  students  to                                                               
receive necessary  education.  As  a father, he looks  forward to                                                               
educating  his daughter,  however, many  students don't  have the                                                               
same parental support,  and he conjectured that  the bill targets                                                               
the poor.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:40:30 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
AURORA HOEFFERLE  stated opposition to  SB 89 and said  she looks                                                               
forward to  becoming a teacher  and supporting the students  in a                                                               
similar way  in which  she was  supported as  a student.   Sexual                                                               
education in  the home  was not available  in her  community, nor                                                               
something  that her  parents considered  necessary or  important.                                                               
The children  coming of age  with access  to the internet  do not                                                               
necessarily access the  best information.  The  opt-out option is                                                               
already available, and an opt-in  requirement is unnecessary, she                                                               
opined.                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:43:37 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
NITHYA  THIRU stated  opposition to  SB 89,  paraphrasing from  a                                                               
prepared statement, which read [original punctuation provided]:                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     In   high  school,   I  was   in  a   sexually  abusive                                                                    
     relationship.  It  was  my first  relationship,  and  I                                                                    
     stayed in it for four  years. My parents are from South                                                                    
     Asia,  and cultural  barriers prevented  me from  being                                                                    
     able  to approach  them for  information about  healthy                                                                    
     relationships.  They had  no concept  of what  American                                                                    
     dating  might   look  like,  having  had   an  arranged                                                                    
     marriage themselves.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     I was provided very few resources at school.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     It  wasn't until  graduating from  high  school that  I                                                                    
     became aware  of the resources available,  and was able                                                                    
     to gain  the knowledge and  strength I needed  to leave                                                                    
     my abusive relationship.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Planned  Parenthood, as  well  as  schools can  provide                                                                    
     valuable support to those  faced with abuse. Especially                                                                    
     in a  place like  Alaska where  abuse is  so prevalent,                                                                    
     limiting access to such resources  is a disgrace to our                                                                    
     state, and  is a grave  disservice to young  people who                                                                    
     are  currently suffering  and  need  our help.  Planned                                                                    
     Parenthood  offers  professional  counseling,  support,                                                                    
     and  resources   where  families  cannot.   A  parent's                                                                    
     ability to help  can often fall short due to  a lack of                                                                    
     objectivity.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     The abuse I  suffered stripped me of my  sense of self.                                                                    
     Had  my   school  provided  more   resources  regarding                                                                    
     sexuality,  and  healthy  relationships,  I  believe  I                                                                    
     would   not  have   waited  so   long   to  leave   the                                                                    
     relationship that I was in.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     We need to empower and  inform our youth, and not strip                                                                    
     them of their ability  to make informed decisions about                                                                    
     their personal health.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Please  stand against  SB89, and  don't perpetuate  the                                                                    
     cycle of abuse.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
9:45:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
KAREN  WARNER stated  opposition  to  SB 89  and  said access  to                                                               
medically  accurate,   evidence  based,   non-judgmental,  sexual                                                               
health education, for the youth  of Alaska, should not be subject                                                               
to  political or  legislative gatekeeping.   The  reportedly high                                                               
rates in  Alaska for STD's and  child abuse make sex  education a                                                               
necessary  school  subject.     Allowing  Planned  Parenthood  to                                                               
provide  a free  and sound  program, will  keep the  children and                                                               
youth safer and healthier.                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
9:47:38 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
ROBIN  SMITH  stated opposition  to  SB  89 paraphrasing  from  a                                                               
prepared statement, which read [original punctuation provided]:                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     Parents  find  dealing   with  their  teen's  sexuality                                                                    
     difficult. We  don't want them hurt  or find themselves                                                                    
     in   difficult   situations    having   an   unintended                                                                    
     pregnancy.  Girl or boy  STIs including HIV can be life                                                                    
     changing.                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     Many  parents  simply ignore  it  or  barely touch  the                                                                    
     surface.   That  is  why  over the  past  20 years,  in                                                                    
     survey after  survey, local, state  or national,  80 to                                                                    
     85  percent   of  parents  indicate  they   want  their                                                                    
     children to receive  comprehensive, medically accurate,                                                                    
     age-appropriate  sex  education.     Parents  see  such                                                                    
     courses and content  as supplementing, not supplanting,                                                                    
     their  discussions  at  home.    They  say  that  their                                                                    
     children  need both  to be  taught  about delaying  the                                                                    
     onset of  intimate sexual relationships until  they are                                                                    
     mature and  responsible and also given  the information                                                                    
     and skills  they need to use  condoms and contraception                                                                    
     when they  do choose to  become sexually active.   It's                                                                    
     not either/or, but both.                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Studies  consistently   show  that   comprehensive  sex                                                                    
     education  is   highly  effective  at   reducing  STIs,                                                                    
     delaying  initiation of  sexual activity,  and lowering                                                                    
     teen pregnancy rates.   The state of  Alaska has failed                                                                    
     to do its job by  not providing comprehensive, accurate                                                                    
     evidenced  based  sex  education.   We  have  no  state                                                                    
     standard curriculum, no  requirement for even providing                                                                    
     it.   And now--no money to  offer it even if  we wanted                                                                    
     to.                                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     Teens  report that  their  main  source of  information                                                                    
     about  sex, dating  and sexual  health comes  from what                                                                    
     they  see and  hear  in the  media.  That includes  TV,                                                                    
     movies music  videos, reality shows, beer  ads, on line                                                                    
     porn, and video games.                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     Social media  is another problem.   Girls are pressured                                                                    
     to  send naked  selfies to  boys.   We are  appalled to                                                                    
     hear  that oral  sex has  become the  new kissing.   We                                                                    
     pray  that isn't  true in  Alaska.   We simply  want to                                                                    
     lock our  kids up until  they're adults.  But  we can't                                                                    
     and we mustn't be blind to what is actually happening.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     These   are   some   of   the   national   facts   from                                                                    
     GreatSchools.org and CommonSenseMedia.org:                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     72% of  teens think  watching TV with  a lot  of sexual                                                                    
     content influences their peers'  behavior somewhat or a                                                                    
     lot.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Programs  with sexual  content average  4.4 scenes  per                                                                    
     hour.                                                                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
     On average,  music videos contain 93  sexual situations                                                                    
     per  hour,  including  11  hard-core  scenes  depicting                                                                    
     behavior like intercourse and oral sex.                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     Between 1998 and  2005, the number of  sexual scenes on                                                                    
     TV nearly doubled.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     1  in  5  children  will  be  approached  by  a  sexual                                                                    
     predator online.                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
     15-to 24-year-olds  account for nearly half  of all STD                                                                    
     diagnoses each year.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     Watching a  lot of sexual  content on TV  and listening                                                                    
     to sexually explicit music  lyrics increase the chances                                                                    
     that a teen will have sex at an earlier age.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
     60% of female video game  characters are presented in a                                                                    
     sexualized fashion.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
     The biggest  users of online pornography  are 12-to 17-                                                                    
     year-old boys.                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     Schools  are  already  overwhelmed by  state  mandates.                                                                    
     Now we  have a [physical education]  teacher or biology                                                                    
     teacher attempting  to teach  sex education.   They can                                                                    
     barely  say  the  word vagina  and  breast,  let  alone                                                                    
     answer  question about  how to  set boundaries,  what's                                                                    
     normal and if  they are going to have sex  what are the                                                                    
     contraceptive options.  It's not simple.                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
     Planned  Parenthood  has  been a  trusted  provider  of                                                                    
     sexual  health education  in Alaska  for  more than  20                                                                    
     years  and  throughout  the   country  for  100  years.                                                                    
     Communities  turn to  us  for nonjudgmental,  unbiased,                                                                    
     medically  accurate curriculum  on reproductive  health                                                                    
     and relationships.                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     We  should   not  deny   our  teens   important  sexual                                                                    
     education  simply  because   some  legislators  do  not                                                                    
     approve of legal abortion or those who provide it.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     Please oppose SB89.                                                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
9:52:37 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
VINCENZA MARRARI  stated opposition to  SB 89, and as  a previous                                                               
Planned  Parenthood  employee,  offered   how  sex  education  is                                                               
handled  in the  public schools  to stress  that abortion  is not                                                               
included in  the curriculum.   The opt-out  policy, during  her 5                                                               
year tenure, was enacted only once.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:57:25 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CAROLYN CLIFT, Teacher,  stated opposition to SB 89  and said the                                                               
bill discriminates  against a single agency,  Planned Parenthood,                                                               
which provides a  free and necessary service.   Parents certainly                                                               
should be  involved in family  planning with their  children, she                                                               
agreed, and  relayed a  scenario that  her family  worked through                                                               
involving  one of  her  sons.   She  maintained that  appropriate                                                               
sexual  education/family  planning   classes  are  essential  for                                                               
teaching young  people how  to be  responsible for  their actions                                                               
and not become  a burden on state resources.   The opt-out aspect                                                               
of  the  bill  is  important,  particularly  regarding  mandatory                                                               
administration of tests that involve special education students.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER closed public testimony.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
10:01:06 AM                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER opined that SB 89  is a means to establish policy to                                                               
support parental  rights and provide transparency  in the system.                                                               
Many  businesses  and  organizations have  restricted  access  to                                                               
public schools,  he pointed out,  and the  bill is not  unique in                                                               
that regard.  The question  for the committee to consider regards                                                               
the potential financial conflict of interest, he suggested.                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CHAIR KELLER announced SB 89 as held, and adjourned the meeting.                                                                

Document Name Date/Time Subjects
2. SB 89 - Sponsor Statement.pdf HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
SB 89
3. SB 89 - Sectional Version F.A.pdf HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
SB 89
4. SB 89 - Version F.A.PDF HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
SB 89
5. SB 89 - Fiscal Note.PDF HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
SB 89
6. SB 89 - Letters of Support.PDF HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
SB 89
7. SB 89 - What it Does & Doesn't Do.pdf HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
SB 89
8. SB 89. ACLU Concerns. 2016.03.14.pdf HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
SB 89
1. HB156 Work draft Y.pdf HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/16/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
HB156A.PDF HEDC 3/30/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 4/13/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
HB156 Sponsor Statment.pdf HEDC 3/30/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 4/13/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
HB156 FY 16 proposed ed budget.pdf HEDC 3/30/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
HB156 FED LAW REVISE.pdf HEDC 3/30/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 4/13/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
HB156 Ed Week stories.pdf HEDC 3/30/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 4/13/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
CSHB156 Workdraft I.pdf HEDC 3/30/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 4/13/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156
CSHB156Fiscal Note.pdf HEDC 3/30/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 4/13/2015 8:00:00 AM
HEDC 3/14/2016 8:00:00 AM
HB 156