May 27, 2021

In a growing number of schools, there’s a divisive, politically charged curriculum being pushed on unsuspecting students—one that’s teaching them to turn their back on America’s founding ideals. And many parents have no practical way to find out what their kids are learning.

But fortunately, as Goldwater Institute Director of Education Policy Matt Beienburg explained on Newsmax’s “The National Report” this week, we’re working to shine a light on schools so parents know just what’s going on.

“A lot of people from the teachers’ unions now all the way up to the White House are pushing explicitly for politically charged, racially divisive content to go into our K-12 classrooms,” Beienburg said. This content is driven by a philosophy known as Critical Race Theory, which teaches that all the events and ideas around us in politics, education, entertainment and the media, the workplace, and beyond must be explained in terms of racial identities.

Critical Race Theory has found special—and growing—favor in America’s schools, many of which now take their lessons from the New York Times’ 1619 Project, an effort aimed to displace the historical significance of July 4, 1776, and reframe the United States as a “slavocracy” rather than a democracy. But there has been backlash to these developments, as groups have emerged to challenge this divisive content. Such groups, Beienburg explained, are “trying very much to get parents engaged and get politics out of the classroom.”

Getting parents engaged demands that they have the knowledge they need to make decisions regarding their children’s education. At the Goldwater Institute, we’re leading an effort to make our schools more transparent when it comes to their curriculum. “We’ve put together an academic transparency initiative that says if schools want to be teaching this sort of political content, they need to be transparent about it, they need to disclose it to parents and families,” Beienburg said.

Under Goldwater’s proposal, each public school in a state would be required to prominently post on its website the learning materials and activities that were used for student instruction at the school during the most recently completed school year. That way, parents can have a clearer picture of what their children are really learning and be able to make more well-informed decisions about the next steps in their education. You can read more about Goldwater’s plan to bring that transparency to K-12 schools here.

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