ACLU Slams Colo. Ed Board’s ‘Deeply Problematic’ Patriotic AP History Plan

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The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado, along with seven other groups, on Wednesday wrote a letter to the Jefferson County, Colo. school board expressing concern over the board’s “deeply problematic” proposal to ensure that the AP U.S. History course is “patriotic.”

“The board’s attempt to monitor school curricula to promote certain viewpoints means privileging the beliefs of some individuals over others,” the groups wrote in the letter. “It is precisely this form of viewpoint discrimination by government that our constitutional system is designed to prevent.”

Following conservative outcry over the College Board’s new “revisionist” framework for the AP U.S. History exam, the Jefferson County board of education proposed the creation of a new curriculum committee to address the course, among others.

The original proposal tasked the committee with making sure the course materials promote “patriotism” and “citizenship” and that the class does “not encourage or condone civil disorder, social strife or disregard of the law.”

The board will discuss the proposal in a Thursday meeting. Since the original plan, the board has removed the text about “patriotism” and “civil disorder.” However, the measure still requires the committee to identify “materials that may reasonably be deemed to be objectionable.”

Students, parents and teachers in Jefferson County have voiced opposition to the new curriculum plan. Students are worried that the course will no longer cover civil rights movements and amounts to censorship. They have staged massive protests and walk-outs over the issue.

In the letter the ACLU, the National Coalition Against Censorship and other organizations take issue with the board’s attempt to promote patriotism and remove material about “civil disorder.” They wrote that telling teachers to remove civil disorder from curricula “is tantamount to telling them to abandon the teaching history.”

They also wrote that flagging materials “deemed to be objectionable” will invite “the exclusion of such material.”

Students plan on attending the school board meeting on Thursday evening to protest the new curriculum proposal.

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  1. This is still going on? Didn’t the AP accrediting organization say that if the school district diluted the class they couldn’t use the letters AP?

    The board members pushing this need to think about where all of this leads. Clearly they have stopped serving the people in their district and only serving their ideology. They could find themselves unemployed come the next election.

    When students themselves march because they don’t think a revised class is going to give them the background they need to succeed in college, you know the proposed class is a joke.

  2. These die-hard liberals on the Jefferson County School Board confuse me.
    Why do they favor maintaining public schools? Why not just extend Sunday school by five days?
    Problem solved.

  3. Changing the scope to say “materials that may reasonably be deemed to be objectionable.” is worse. This statement opens the argument up to anything the board would deem objectionable.

  4. “not encourage or condone civil disorder, social strife or disregard of the law.”

    So, no teaching about lawbreakers like Harriet Tubman or Martin Luther King, huh?

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