Republican states in the US seek to limit teaching on race.
Miami World – AP
Teachers and professors in Idaho will be prevented from “indoctrinating” students on issues of race. Oklahoma teachers will be prohibited from saying that certain people are inherently racist or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously. Tennessee schools risk losing state support if their classes include particular concepts about race and racism.
Governors and lawmakers in Republican-controlled states across the country are mobilizing to define what race-related ideas can be taught in public schools and universities, a reaction to the nation’s racial consciousness after African-American George Floyd died last year to hands of a white policeman. The measures were signed into law in at least three states and are being considered in many more.
Educators and educational groups are concerned that the proposals will have a chilling effect in the classroom and that students will receive a version of the nation’s history that favors whites. Teachers are also concerned about the possible repercussions if a student or their parents complain.
“Once we take away the options for teachers to incorporate all parts of the story, we basically silence the voices of those who feel oppressed beforehand,” said Lakeisha Patterson, a third grade English and social studies teacher who lives in Houston and is concerned about a proposed law that is under consideration in Texas.
At least 16 states consider or have enacted laws that would limit the teaching of certain ideas related to “critical race theory,” which attempts to reshape the narrative of American history. Proponents argue that federal law has preserved unequal treatment of people on the basis of race and that the country was founded on the theft of land and jobs.
These states include Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, Iowa, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and West Virginia.