An authoritative handbook based on parents' everyday worries, frustrations, and confusion about public education. Though the work of many hands, the volume is carefully organized to provide easy access to an enormous amount of information; uses a question-and-answer format thoughtfully to personalize issues (""Isn't there some way I can spare my daughter the unpleasantness of being forced to play kickball with the boys in her class?""); provides clear, readable responses; and, in making suggestions for further reading, gives bibliographic information complete to price, The material is divided into seven areas: Rights (access to records, students' rights, and sex discrimination); Discipline, Rules and Safety; What Goes on in the Classroom; Special Programs (everything from hot lunches to handicapped children); the School System: How the Machinery Is Arranged and How Things Can Be Changed; People; and Changing Schools (otherwise known as moving). Sections on rights, discipline, and special programs explain what's legally due students with varying needs--from wheelchair access in a high school, to a free breakfast program, to a hearing before suspension from class--and specify the procedures parents should follow when they have questions or concerns. In addition, aspects of life in schools that are mysterious to those outside the profession are explained clearly, with suggestions for influencing the decision-makers. The tone throughout is positive, emphasizing what citizens and parents can do in partnership with the schools to assure quality education for all students. To further this end, the extensive appendices (160 pp. of a total of 395) list child advocacy groups, relevant legislation, landmark court cases, and various state requirements. Addressed to parents, but a possible resource for students as well.