Sounds like Colorado heard Obama's clarion call for responsibility loud and clear. Centennial State citizens and lawmakers spent the better part of last week debating the merits of a bill to promote parental and community involvement. Specifically, HB 1057 would guarantee that working parents receive up to 40 hours of unpaid leave per academic year to attend school events--like parent-teacher conferences and student plays. While the PTA and teacher groups are ecstatic, many business organizations have blasted the bill as unfair to small companies, citing the excessive monetary burden in an already sagging economy and the hardships levied on other employees. These are understandable concerns, and 40 hours per year is probably excessive, though proponents are right when they point out that students whose parents are involved in their education tend to do better. Calling for parents to step up to the plate goes only so far if you can't get to the plate in the first place.
"Showing up for the kids," by Susan Greene, editorial, The Denver Post, January 8, 2009
"Businesses blast mandatory time-off bill," by Bob Mook, Denver Business Journal, January 22, 2009