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  Topic: Arizona:  Bill would muzzle teachers< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
Jason Spaceman



Posts: 163
Joined: Nov. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 06 2007,06:51   

Quote
Billy Gerchick never hesitated before assigning his English students a pair of short stories last week by Ernest Hemingway — “Soldier’s Home” and “Hills Like White Elephants” — despite their controversial themes.

But a bill being sponsored by a powerful East Valley lawmaker could give Gerchick, a teacher at Scottsdale’s Coronado High School, reason to pause in the future. It could keep him from assigning the classic works because of their subjects: war and abortion, respectively.

Senate Majority Leader Thayer Verschoor, R-Gilbert, is the driving force behind a proposal that seeks to quiet teachers who openly endorse or champion political and social issues in the classroom.

Verschoor said the proposal is a reaction from constituents who describe a culture in which teachers are often not fair or impartial when it comes to expressing political viewpoints.

The bill gives students the power to speak out against outspoken teachers, he said. And it holds teachers, who are paid with state tax dollars, accountable for what they say.

But teachers, students and other critics fear the measure would suppress free speech in the classroom. Likewise, they worry the measure would drive teachers out of Arizona — or out of the profession — for fear of being punished.

The bill, SB1542, would forbid teachers working in their official capacity from endorsing or opposing political candidates or expressing opinions about social issues. Teachers could face a $500 fine or lose their jobs if found guilty.


Read it here.

   
Jason Spaceman



Posts: 163
Joined: Nov. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 06 2007,07:01   

The text of the bill is here.

The part of the bill that would apply to ID/creationism would be:

Quote
A teacher who is acting as an agent of or who is working in an official instructional capacity for a school district or charter school shall not:. . .

. . .4.  Advocate one side of a social, political or cultural issue that is a matter of partisan controversy.


Oh, and this would apply to professors at state universities too:

Quote
An instructor at a university under the jurisdiction of the Arizona board of regents or at a community college under the jurisdiction of a community college district who is acting as an agent of or who is working in an official instructional capacity for a university or community college shall not:. . .

. . .4.  Advocate one side of a social, political or cultural issue that is a matter of partisan controversy.

   
MidnightVoice



Posts: 380
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 06 2007,08:05   

Actually is is great news.  They can still support evolution, as it is a scientific issue.  But they cannot support ID because it is "social, political or cultural"

So No ID in Arizona!!

--------------
If I fly the coop some time
And take nothing but a grip
With the few good books that really count
It's a necessary trip

I'll be gone with the girl in the gold silk jacket
The girl with the pearl-driller's hands

  
Henry J



Posts: 4565
Joined: Mar. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Mar. 06 2007,14:46   

So, what happens to Civics classes if this passes?

  
  3 replies since Mar. 06 2007,06:51 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >  

    


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