A proposal making its way through the General Assembly would require parents with children in kindergarten through grade 4 to ''volunteer'' at least 12 hours a year. And they couldn't just show up — they'd be expected to get involved in the teaching process by tutoring, chaperoning lesson-related field trips or helping students play educational games.
Forget, for a moment, what a bad idea this is in principle. Think of the type of people this dragnet might pull in -- child molesters, violent abusive types, complete idiots, people who bathe twice a year, etc. As a general principle, people who only show up because they are forced to do so, don't put in much effort; which is probably one of the bigger problems that public schools face these days.
I hope that Gov. Bredesen vetoes this bill, should it make it that far.