Last Friday, Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed a bill that would prohibit critical race theory from being taught in public schools.
“The legislature should be focused on supporting teachers, helping students recover lost learning, and investing in our public schools,” Gov. Cooper said in a press release. “Instead, this bill pushes calculated, conspiracy-laden politics into public education."
House Bill 324
The text of House Bill 324 said it was created with the intent that students, teachers, administrators and other school faculty recognize the equality and rights of everyone and to prevent public schools from teaching certain concepts that may go against that intent.
Concepts the bill said should not be promoted include:
- one race or sex being superior to another,
- an individual is inherently racist, sexist or oppressive based on their race or sex,
- and that the United States was created by members of one race or sex with the intent of oppressing members of another race or sex.
The bill also mentioned that public school units should notify the state's Department of Public Instruction and list information on the school’s website at least 30 days before any of these concepts were included in curricula, workshops and trainings, or before hiring speakers, consultants and diversity trainers to discuss such concepts.
Theodore M. Shaw, a professor of law at UNC and director of the Center for Civil Rights, said critical race theory is not intended to be taught to school children or to make them feel guilty for actions of people in the past.
“It isn’t about teaching elementary school children to either be racist or ashamed of what they are — they shouldn’t be taught that,” Shaw said. “On the other hand, they should be taught history in a more full and honest way. But that’s history, that’s not critical race theory.”