When they write the history books about the State Board of Education, last week’s drama over our new social studies textbooks probably won’t go down as a high point.
After punting on a preliminary vote Tuesday, the board approved the textbooks on Friday despite receiving hundreds of pages of revisions at the last minute, which many members hadn’t read. Those revisions came partly in response to 1,500 worried letters from the public that were still arriving just last week. Though the 10-5 vote split on party lines, members agreed that this year’s textbook approvals had been a mess.
But the process was a big win for at least one man, Roy White, and his fellow volunteer textbook watchdogs.
White’s year-old group Truth in Texas Textbooks made an impressive entrance into Texas’ ancient and ongoing fight over what children learn in school, with a recently-released 469-page review of this year’s social studies textbooks.Unfortunately, the folks who are in charge of either voting up or down on the textbooks did not have the time to examine all of the complaints TTT made because at least the ones involving evolution and the age of the earth were completely bogus.This is not good because, often, where Texas goes, the rest of the nation goes.