Messing with Texas’ textbooks

MESSING WITH TEXAS’ TEXTBOOKS…. When we last checked in with the Texas Board of Education, conservatives were working on downplaying the contributions of civil rights leaders in social studies curricula. In particular, an evangelical minister tapped as an “expert” for state officials, questioned whether former Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall should be presented to Texas students as an important historical figure.

Officials did, however, want to add instruction on the “motivational role the Bible and the Christian faith played in the settling of the original colonies.”

By way of Lee Fang, it seems the board is still hard at work, and moving in the wrong direction.

Texas high school students would learn about such significant individuals and milestones of conservative politics as Newt Gingrich and the rise of the Moral Majority — but nothing about liberals — under the first draft of new standards for public school history textbooks. […]

The first draft for proposed standards in United States History Studies Since Reconstruction says students should be expected “to identify significant conservative advocacy organizations and individuals, such as Newt Gingrich, Phyllis Schlafly and the Moral Majority.”

A Democratic state lawmaker said, as it stands, Texas students would get “one-sided, right wing ideology.” He added, “We ought to be focusing on historical significance and historical figures. It’s important that whatever course they take, that it portray a complete view of our history and not a jaded view to suit one’s partisan agenda or one’s partisan philosophy.”

That certainly sounds reasonable, but this is the Texas Board of Education we’re talking about.