Got a moment to help history in Texas? If so, kindly tweet

@teainfo Do right by TX kids & public school kids everywhere. Reject distorted Social Studies curriculum changes. #SaveHistory

Here’s why:

The Texas State Board of Education is having its bimonthly meeting at this morning at 7am PDT/10EDT and they’re voting to approve curriculum standards. One change being put forth:

Dr. Don McLeroy–a dentist and a defeated, outgoing member of the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE)–

recommended a change to curriculum (page 3) that prominent American history muckrackers and reformers like Upton Sinclair, Susan B. Anthony, Ida B. Wells and W.E.B. DuBois be contrasted against “the optimism of immigrants including Jean Pierre Godet as told in Thomas Kinkade’s The Spirit of America.”  Dr. McLeroy did not mention that Jean Pierre Godet is a character in a work of fiction written in 1998.

Nor did Dr McLeroy mention the qualifications of the book’s author: Per Amazon.com, Thomas Kinkade is

one of the most popular painters in the world. A devout Christian and accomplished modern-day impressionist.

Not that I’m an academic snob–far from it. I wrote for and an edited a national magazine on religious history, and don’t have a degree in history. Or religion. But I had a number of heavy duty scholars as fellow editors and hell of a background in research and writing for glossy magazines.  And our magazine wasn’t used in an elementary school classroom, either.

McLeroy has an interesting historical perspective. He voted to remove Dolores Huerta, cofounder of United Farm Workers of America, from a Grade 3 list of “historical and contemporary figures who have exemplified good citizenship” because she was socialist. Okay but  earlier McLeroy added W.E.B. DuBois so the Grade 2 standards. DuBois had joined the Communist Party in the year before he died.

(image: Classroom Clip Art)

Lisa Derrick

Lisa Derrick

Los Angeles native, attended UC Berkeley and Loyola Marymount University before punk rock and logophilia overtook her life. Worked as nightclub columnist, pop culture journalist and was a Hollywood housewife before writing for and editing Sacred History Magazine. Then she discovered the thrill of politics. She also appears frequently on the Dave Fanning Show, one of Ireland's most popular radio broadcasts.

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