Cultural Revolutions

Texas Rebellion

You must have noticed that the National Education Association, the New York Times, ABC, NBC, CBS, left-wing bloggers, and even the Dallas Morning News went ape in March over the outcome of textbook deliberations in Texas.  It seems that the state board of education, dominated by political and social conservatives, prescribed changes in model curricula developed by a committee of teachers and scholars that is dominated by political and social liberals.

The shock, the raw anger, the outrage over the board’s intervention suggest the deeper question that troubles Texas and, for that matter, the rest of America: To whom do our public schools belong?  The people of Texas have established a school system, and they support it with their tax dollars.  Having paid the bills, do they have the right to say what is taught in their own schools?  Or must they surrender that right to a group of “experts” who are presumed to know more about what children should believe than parents and other ordinary citizens?  That question is complicated by the fact that today we are in the midst of a polarizing “culture war” that makes rational dialogue on many issues all but impossible.

In setting up their unique curricula-adoption system, Texas answers that question.  It has established a committee of experts to construct model curricula for math, history, social studies, and other subjects. ...

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