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Textbook Case: Texas Education Board Seeks To De-Politicize Book Review Process – Maybe

It looks like Texas may be trying to put an end to its annual showdown over whether to add creationism to public school science textbooks.

A new procedural change does something fairly radical: It gives priority to qualified teachers on the external review panels that assist the book selection process. Read more

Triumph In Texas: State School Board Approves Sound-Science Materials

We have a victory in Texas! On Friday, the State Board of Education voted unanimously to approve sound-science materials for public school biology courses.

By a 14-0 vote, the board chose to approve supplemental materials from mainstream publishers, not creationism-based recommendations from Religious Right-backed vendors. Read more

Local Option Error: N.J. Gov. Says School Boards Can Promote Creationism

If it were left up to Gov. Chris Christie, public education in New Jersey would be a free-for-all.

At a town hall in Manalapan, N.J., last week, Christie said he believes public school districts should get to determine whether to teach creationism in science classes because that’s a decision that should be made “at the local level.”

When asked at a press conference yesterday about this issue again, Christie reiterated his stance. Read more

Slow Learners: Conservative Think Tank Flunks Texas Social Studies Standards

Texas should have seen this coming.

The Lone Star State has received a “D” for the bogus public school social studies curriculum that its State Board of Education (SBOE) adopted last year.

The icing on the cake is that this letter grade comes from a report issued by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a conservative think tank. Read more

Army Maneuvers: Military Officials Should Leave Proselytizing To Civilians

Last week, Americans United urged Army officials to cancel an evangelistic event at Fort Bragg in North Carolina.

Unfortunately, we found out about this rather late. The complaint came in on Thursday, and “Rock The Fort” was scheduled for Saturday. AU’s Legal Department swung into gear with a strong letter to military officials, but it was not enough; they refused to cancel the event. Read more

More Trouble In Texas: State School Board (Sigh) Considers Ridiculous Resolution

I really never thought the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) could become any more of a laughing stock than it already is. But I guess I was wrong.

Next week, the SBOE will consider a resolution that criticizes publishers for supposedly promoting anti-Christian/pro-Islamic bias in world history textbooks. Read more

Tainted Textbooks: California Acts To Keep Warped History Out Of Its Social Studies Classes

In the wake of the Texas State Board of Education’s vote adding “Christian nation” baloney and other far-right concepts to social studies standards, there has been much speculation about how other states might be affected.

The thinking goes like this: Texas is a big state that purchases a lot of textbooks. Books that are tailored to meet Texas’ demands could end up in other states.

How likely is this to happen? Some commentators say the fear is overblown, asserting that in the age of digital publishing, it’s actually not hard to produce special “Texas editions” of books. Read more

Lone Star Scrape: State School Board Approves Bogus Social Studies Curriculum

We knew things weren’t going to turn out well in Texas once we heard Cynthia Dunbar’s invocation on Friday morning.

Before the Texas State Board of Education voted on the controversial social studies curriculum, Dunbar prayed for what she hoped students would learn in public schools. Read more

Messin’ With Texas: Religious Right Faction Faces Blowback Over Social Studies Standards

The right-wing fundamentalist bloc on the Texas State Board of Education is bound and determined to rewrite American history. As reported here recently, member Don McLeroy has proposed amending Social Studies standards to cast doubt on the legitimacy of separation of church and state. Read more

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