Inauguration Frustration

January 15, 2009 1 min read

At least some students in the Keller Independent School District, near Ft. Worth, Texas, will be tuning in to Tuesday’s inaugural festivities, as officials reversed an earlier announcement saying students and teachers would be barred from watching during instructional time. Dallas / Fort Worth’s CBS 11 reports that the district will now allow students to watch the swearing-in ceremony after widespread outcry from parents—but only if the ceremony occurs during students’ social studies or U.S. history classes.

District officials said they never intended to imply the inauguration wasn’t a historic event, saying the previous decision to ban viewing was to keep students focused on the curriculum. After a flood of criticism from parents and community members, the district clarified the announcement saying that social studies classes could watch. For some, that’s not enough.

“Watching a historic moment — like a man landing on the moon — has educational value that is greater than an hour-and-a-half worth of curriculum,” Larry West, associate director for the teachers group United Educators Association, told the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram. “When it happens, it is a common sense of history for everyone. Many of our teachers feel that sacrificing history for the sake of a few hours of curriculum is not acceptable.”

A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.