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Learning about in loco parentis

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Superintendent’s Update

Have you ever heard the term “In loco parentis”? It literally translates to “in the place of the parent.”

The term describes the partnership between the home and the school. “In loco parentis” refers to not only the rights that a school district has to educate a child, along with the discipline that may sometimes come along with that but also the responsibilities that a school has to care for the child while in their care.

In 1769, Sir William Blackstone coined this phrase to describe the shared responsibility between the parents and the schools to educate, train, discipline and care for, the child while in their proprietorship. Since attendance at school is mandated by law under compulsory attendance, the parent is essentially delegating and sharing their authority with the school. Blackstone referred to the schoolmasters who were often the sole individuals responsible for the education of children. The thought is that while schools assume the “custody” of the child, the student is therefore deprived of the protection offered by the parent.

At Navasota ISD, our No. 1 priority is for the care, the safety and the well-being of every single student and staff member that is in our care every day. Our No. 2 priority is for the proper education and preparation of every single student that comes through our schools to help prepare them to be successful later in life. Those two priorities are not exclusive, and they go hand in hand. In order to educate a child, we must also provide for their care and well-being. From providing transportation to and from school, to providing a hot meal for breakfast and lunch, to provide for a high-quality education, there are a lot of components that must work together to make that happen. And a lot of folks that do just that every single day, care for your child, educate your child, and love your child just like they were our own. Because for approximately eight hours a day, many times more, they are.

Are there some bumps in the road along the way? You bet. Just like family. And just like a parent learning from different situations or how they may have handled it better, we never stop learning and we never stop improving.

Thank you for trusting us with that responsibility and thank you for your help and support as we work together to make that happen.

We are ALL IN this TOGETHER!


Dr. Stu Musick is the Superintendent of Schools for Navasota Independent School District.