A school administrator in Texas told teachers that, to comply with new state law, if theyabout the Holocaust, they should also include a book with “opposing” or “other perspectives,” reported NBC News. In a recording of a meeting last Friday, which a Carroll Independent teacher provided to NBC News, Gina Peddy, the district’s executive director of curriculum and instruction, is heard training teachers on how to comply with a new Texas law that broadly seeks to block teachers from talking about white supremacy, racism, and privilege in classrooms. “We are in the middle of a political mess,” Peddy , later adding: “No one knows how to navigate these waters.” “Make sure that if you have a , that you have one that has to oppose, that has other perspectives,” Peddy says, as shocked outbursts and murmurs are heard around the room.
“What?” one. “How do you oppose the Holocaust?” asks another.
The school district did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for comment, including clarifying what constitutes an “opposing” perspective on the Holocaust other than professional development, resources, and materials needed.” “Our district has not and will not mandate books be removed,” she added. The recent is reacting to, House Bill 3979, requires that teachers who discuss “widely debated and currently controversial issues” in the classroom explore these from “diverse and contending perspectives without deference to any one perspective.”. District spokesperson Karen Fitzgerald told NBC News that “Texas teachers are in a precarious position with the latest legal requirements” and that the district’s “purpose is to support our teachers in ensuring they have all the
The Holocaust — Nazi Germany’s murder of 6 million Jews — is not a “widely debated” or “currently controversial” issue. The Texas law also makes no mention of which booksread. Texas is just one of several states — including Tennessee, Iowa, Idaho, and Oklahoma — to enact laws this to limit how teachers discuss systemic racism in public schools, often under the guise of banning “critical race theory” from classrooms. Republican lawmakers are pushing similar bills in nearly two . While the laws passed don’t explicitly mention — a college-level academic discipline focused on how racism is embedded in the country’s legal, political, and social institutions — they are all written with similar language meant to stifle instruction about racism, privilege, and white supremacy.
Texas’ law, notably, also instructs social studies teachers in public K-12in class about the concepts that “an individual should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment solely or partly because of the individual’s race” or that “an individual should feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress” based on their race or sex. Teachers who spoke to HuffPost in June condemned the laws in Texas and other states as attempts to “whitewash” history that also led to confusion about what they can and teach.