October 2010 Church & State | AU Bulletin

Americans United and 22 other religious, educational and advocacy groups have backed a U.S. House resolution that criticizes the Texas State Board of Education for politicizing the state’s social studies standards.

U.S. Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas) introduced the measure, which supports academically sound curriculum development and charges that the board “disregarded many academically based recommendations and approved politically biased standards within the curriculum that are outside of mainstream scholarship.” H. Res. 1593 is co-sponsored by U.S. Reps. Solomon P. Ortiz, Ruben Hinojosa, Silvestre Reyes and Gene Green.

In a joint letter, AU and allies commended Johnson, asserting, “The politicization of the process by which curriculum standards are adopted in Texas has garnered national attention and has set a dangerous precedent that we fear could be repeated in other places. Therefore, we appreciate your efforts to draw attention to this problem. We agree that it should not be up to any politician to write history; instead teachers and experts in the field should be utilized to determine curriculum standards.”

Groups signing the letter include: the American Federation of Teachers, American Association of University Women, Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, Catholics for Choice, Center for Inquiry, Hindu American Foundation, Interfaith Alliance, National Alliance of Black School Educators, NAACP, National Council of Jewish Women, People For the American Way, Secular Coalition for America, Texas Faith Network, Texas Freedom Network and the United Church of Christ Justice & Witness Ministries.