School Districts Refute Running Afoul of Law, Teaching Race and Gender Ideology

( – Two Arkansas school districts are pushing back on the state’s claim that they violated the governor’s executive order about teaching gender ideology and other materials that include components of Critical Race Theory (CRT). A document published by the Arkansas Education Department accused Pulaski County Elementary School of allowing teachers to “hang divisive materials in their classrooms, including the pride flag.” A spokesperson for the school said that the flags were displayed in classrooms “before the first day of school,” and confirmed that the school made a post on social media about gay pride.

Bruce Orr, a spokesperson for Lakeside School District, said that the state told him that the school was not in violation of any state law. However, a spokesperson for the education department refuted his claim. According to NBC News, a slide in a history presentation in a Lakeside school classroom was in question, but the outlet did not identify the details of the slide. Orr said that the slide would not violate the law, because it complies with the frameworks required by the state for teaching history. He also said that the slide was inserted into the presentation before Governor Sarah Sanders took office, although the relevancy of that reasoning is unknown.

Fayetteville School District was also mentioned in the document for giving students a survey that asked about their gender ideology. The department also identified Arkansas State University as violating a new law that Sanders signed back in March regarding CRT. A mandatory teacher training in June discussed white people having an unconscious bias against black people. The university has already agreed to remove the discussion in future training. The same training was also given to teachers at North Little Rock School District. Parents across the country have demanded schools remove curriculum that teaches history through the lens of race, as many believe that furthers division. Many Republican states are pushing for or have passed legislation to remove the teachings from classrooms.

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