School Access Legislation

HB 365 Description

Mississippi House Bill 365, an act to authorize school principals to permit the Boy Scouts of America and the Girl Scouts of the United States of America to speak with students about civic involvement and their participation; to provide a process for approval of requests to speak with students; to require parents to be notified of such presentations by the Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts.

Recently, some Mississippi public schools have been hesitant to let Scouting representatives appear before parents and students to recruit Scouts as we have for decades in our public schools. The aims of Scouting are: Patriotism/Citizenship, Character Development, Leadership and Personal Fitness. Most of the concern from schools appears to be about whether allowing Scouting means they have to open their doors to every single group that comes to them.

Over the past few years neighboring states have passed legislation ensuring Scouting and other patriotic organizations can continue to have the brief (3-4 minutes in a classroom) presentation they’ve always had to offer this rich program to youth.

Mississippi House Bill 365 would provide to Scouting in Mississippi what Scouting in other states have – continued access to our public school system to recruit scouting. Many of our neighboring states already have this. HB 365 would ensure we can continue to offer the Scouting opportunity to students around this state.

On February 8, 2023 House Bill 365 was passed by the Mississippi House of Representatives 103 Aye to 4 Nay; on February 10, 2023 the bill moved to the Mississippi Senate for their consideration.

The Legislature needs to hear from you.

We need you, please, to call, text or email any Mississippi State Senators you know or have ever met and ask them to please ask Senate Education Committee to pass HB 365. Please explain that Scouting relies on schools to put its rich program in front of America’s youth. The bill only applies to Boy Scouts and Girls Scouts and simply ensures continued, non-intrusive access to our schools.

A Sample Letter and a list of Mississippi Legislators are provided in the below Resources section.

File Name Description
Mississippi Legislators Public contact information for Mississippi State Representatives and Senators, current February 2023. Download
Sample Letter for Mississippi Senators Sample letter asking for Mississippi Senators to support HB-365, supporting public school access for Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts Download