Lord, we ask that those in decision-making roles would contend for accurate portrayal of American History as well as the spiritual heritage of our nation. Please ensure that our children our being educated not indoctrinated into false ideologies and philosophies. Show us what we can do. In Jesus’ name.
AUSTIN, Texas, May 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Today, the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) begins to finalize social studies educational standards for the state after 18 months of work on the standards. A final vote is expected on Friday. Liberty Institute, along with concerned parents, educators, and veterans, will testify before the Board to advocate for accurate, common sense standards.
“After almost 18 months of review, educators, experts, parents and members of the business community are sending a message: we don’t want the American Atheists and the ACLU in charge of writing our history standards and we don’t want a delay of the final vote,” said Jonathan Saenz, Esq., director of legislative affairs for Liberty Institute. “Liberal fringe efforts to complicate, obfuscate, and denigrate our heritage and history must be rejected. A vote delayed is a vote denied.”
Since January 2009, the SBOE has been working toward passage on the social studies curriculum standards, which is a framework of information for statewide curriculum/textbook content. First steps in the process included revisions by unelected curriculum review panels, and in March 2009, the Board took up discussion of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for social studies in meetings. Among the changes suggested by the panels are suggestions to remove Christmas, Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Neil Armstrong, and the Liberty Bell, among others. The Board voted to add all of these back in the standards.
Additionally, an SBOE member (Don McLeroy, R-Bryan) announced a proposal this week to add classroom analysis of the Founding Fathers’ intent in the Constitution and First Amendment in a contrast to the phrase “separation of church and state” and assumed meanings of the term.
“The Board’s proposal to have students compare ‘separation of church and state’ with the actual words of the Constitution is an excellent idea and will be a real service to the students,” said Kelly Shackelford, Esq., president/CEO of Liberty Institute, who testified before the Board today. “It takes a true liberal extremist to oppose students reading the Constitution.”
In recent months, liberal groups including the ACLU, American Atheists, and Americans United for Separation of Church and State have attempted to influence the curriculum standards, even going as far as to recommend that the SBOE postpone the final vote on the standards until after the November elections, hoping for more liberal representation on the Board.
The SBOE, which consists of fifteen elected officials representing the State of Texas, meets every two months and approves curriculum standards and textbooks for use in public schools statewide and other education-related matters. The standards passed by the Board will be in place for the next ten years.