Kentucky Education Commissioner Jason Glass urged lawmakers to consider an alternative to banning critical race theory.
Glass on Tuesday recommended to lawmakers on the Interim Joint Education Committee that they enact a statute that forces conversations on race to have balanced perspectives. His proposal would require any classroom discussions or lessons on the issues to also share the critiques and criticisms of critical race theory that have been offered. That would help students make their own informed decisions on the theory, he said.
Glass said critical race theory is a decades-old legal and academic theory that seeks to explain why racism continues to exist. It’s a theory intended to provide a framework for studying potential causes and effects of racism in society and how those might be mitigated.
The alternate approach Glass suggested still allows local school-based councils to make curriculum decisions for their schools, the commissioner said.
And if a school-based council decides to have some class that covers critical race theory, it would also need to provide balanced perspectives and opposing viewpoints.
The alternative approach does not put a legislative body in the business of banning or censoring ideas or free speech or limiting the free exchange of ideas in the classrooms, Glass said. He warned previously that attempts to pass a proposed ban on the theory in Kentucky schools could be challenged in court.
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