TFN PRESIDENT: STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION MEMBERS WILL USE THIS BILL TO RETURN TEXAS TO THE WORST YEARS OF THE TEXTBOOK WARS
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 28, 2017
AUSTIN – Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller is warning that today’s passage of SB801 by the House and Senate threatens to return Texas to the worst years of textbook censorship by the State Board of Education.
SB801 allows the state board to determine whether content in textbooks under consideration for use in Texas public schools is “suitable for the subject and grade level.” Current state board member and former chair Barbara Cargill, R–The Woodlands, has already made clear she and her colleagues will use that provision to reject textbook content they don’t like.
Prior to 1995, state board members sometimes demanded hundreds of changes to textbook content they didn’t like, often for personal or political reasons rather than factual accuracy. If publishers didn’t make the changes, the state board could reject their textbooks for use in Texas public schools. But in 1995 the Legislature finally reined in this authority, requiring that the board approve any textbook that conforms to the state’s curriculum standards and is free… Read More
Lt. Governor’s Phony Justification Is Just Fear-Mongering FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller has the following statement on the announcement today by Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and state Sen. Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham, of their Senate Bill 6, which would bar transgender people from using public restrooms consistent with their gender identity. Miller pointed out that the name of the bill, the so-called “Privacy Act,” itself is misleading because its supporters still cannot point to a single instance in which someone’s privacy or safety was endangered by transgender people using public restrooms. Miller went on: Read More
The State Board of Education's war on evolution in Texas public schools is in the news again. Now the Houston Chronicle, Fort Worth Star-Telegram and other newspaper around the state are publishing this new column from Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller. Here is the full version: Read More
Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller issued the following statement on Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s announcement that his office will file a legal challenge to the Obama administration’s directive that public school districts protect transgender students from discrimination.
“It is shameful that Attorney General Paxton has decided to use the power of his office to join the lieutenant governor in bullying transgender students in our public schools. There have been more criminal charges filed against Paxton than there have been cases – zero, in fact – of transgender people using non-discrimination policies as an excuse to enter public restrooms to commit assaults, but that fact doesn’t seem to be stopping top state elected officials from stoking irrational fears about a problem that doesn’t exist and stigmatizing transgender children. The Obama administration’s directive simply asks school districts to acknowledge a student’s gender identity and shield them from discrimination.”
Far-right politicians and political activists have used bathroom access issues to target non-discrimination policies across the country that protect everyone, including LGBT individuals. Last year in Houston, the same fear-tactics were used to overturn the city’s Equal Rights Ordinance. And in North Carolina, the state legislature passed legislation to overturn a… Read More