A bill that could ban the teaching of controversial concepts in Indiana public schools is being introduced in the House after going to committee on January 12.
After Senate Bill 167 of a similar nature was blocked, Republican Rep. Anthony Cook proposed a similar bill to the House Education Committee.
After months of parents protesting aspects such as universal masking, teaching critical race theory, etc., Cook, as a former history teacher, reproduced the stopped Senate bill to show that schools should talk about facts rather than theory.
New Albany Republican Representative Ed Clere and Democrats on the committee voted against the bill. However, the other eight Republicans voted in favor and he is now heading for full House scrutiny after passing eight to five.
With the content of House Bill 1134titled “Education Matters”, being a controversial topic for today’s educators, many education students on campus are worried about what lies ahead.
“It’s kind of like the freedom that’s given to you as an educator is taken away from you,” said junior Dylan Hampton, an education student from Southeast IU.
“One of the attractions of being a teacher is the freedom that comes with having your own class and you can decide what is the most important thing for students to know,” he said.
According to a Indiana State University (ISU) Bayh College of Education Study nearly 97% of schools in Indiana are experiencing a teacher shortage.
UIS Emeritus Professor Terry McDaniel says he believes standardized testing, low pay and mistreatment by parents are the forces behind the growing shortages.
With a bill full of parental control over the curriculum, these teacher shortages could get worse.
Even with the possible change in parental controls in the curriculum, Dr. Donna Albrecht, director of graduate studies at IU Southeast’s school of education, says they don’t plan to change the way they give lessons. Classes.
“I believe that teachers and instructors in schools of education teach [future] educators by following the academic standards that guide our profession and must not change,” she said.
Additionally, Dr. Albrecht said that future generations must be prepared to defend themselves against racism and discrimination.
Another gap that many feel with the bill is the clause about what teachers are and are not allowed to discuss when talking to students.
This part of the bill could limit teachers’ ability to help students with academic difficulties or even difficulties outside of the classroom.
“Part of teaching is building a relationship with students and if those relationships are limited, teachers will have a harder time imparting to students the knowledge they need to be successful and social,” Hampton said.
The bill has no set date to move forward in the Indiana House of Representatives. State union teachers are asking that if a resident opposes this bill, they sign their petition on the Indiana State Teachers Association website.