Missouri Lawmakers Seek to Ban Critical Race Theory After Local School Battle
The Missouri state flag is seen flying outside the Missouri State Capitol Building on January 17, 2021 in Jefferson City, Missouri.
Michael B. Thomas via Getty Images

Missouri Republican state lawmakers are advocating for a law that would ban the teaching of critical race theory in schools following a controversy concerning a school district that paid $15,000 for the development of an inclusive curriculum that promotes that America is irredeemably rooted in racism.

“What this bill does is it sets out the criteria related to critical race theory and then it bans that criteria,” Rep. David Gregory (R-St. Louis) said, according to Fox 2 News.

“There are so many parents who have come to me very upset, very concerned that their kids are being taught that they are the oppressor simply because of the color of their skin or the way they were born,” he added.

Missouri state House Speaker Pro Tem John Wiemann (R) pre-filed the legislation regarding a ban on critical race theory earlier in December.

The bill, HB 1835, intends to “ensure children are being taught appropriate subject matter in the classroom, and … give parents access to the instructional material being taught to their kids.”

“Parents around the state are very concerned about some of the subject matter that has shown up in our classrooms, such as critical race theory,” Wiemann said. “It’s important that we give our kids a complete picture of our nation’s history, but also that we provide this information in a way that is accurate and unbiased. Parents should not have to worry that their kids are being exposed to hateful, racist ideologies when they send them to school.”

If passed, the ban would add to a growing number of states with laws or executive orders against the controversial view. Nine states had passed laws by November, including Idaho, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Arizona, and North Dakota.

The Daily Wire reported in July regarding $15,000 paid for the creation of a controversial curriculum in one Missouri school district.

Francis Howell School District in St. Charles County, Missouri, hired Dr. LaGarrett King in September 2020 for his “professional development and consultation services.” King is an associate professor of social education at the University of Missouri and the director of the university’s Carter Center for K-12 Black History Education.

According to a contract obtained by a concerned parents group, King was paid $15,000 for a slew of online and in-person consulting services and curriculum developments. He was specifically tasked with assisting a team of high school teachers to create an African American history course.

“Dr. King will provide training, professional development, curriculum audit, and support to our leadership team as we develop and design this course during the 2020-21 school year,” the contract reads.

The school district’s website claims the courses do not promote critical race theory.

Students had been advocating for these courses for a number of years – long before “CRT” (which will be addressed in the next section) was a buzzword. The courses offer a necessary step toward cultural inclusion in our school communities – providing an opportunity for all students to see themselves represented in the curriculum and allowing students of all races to learn about the Black experience in America.

The Washington Free Beacon found that King also conducted a virtual seminar for teachers as part of his contract. The report stated:

Educators should teach history through a “social justice lens” regardless of parents’ or community concern, King said. He recommended that teachers in districts like Francis Howell edit the “verbage” [sic] they use in their lessons so that they “can still get things accomplished in a critical fashion.” One teacher in the session admitted that she’d been teaching her students about white privilege for at least a decade.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Missouri Lawmakers Seek to Ban Critical Race Theory After Local School Battle