Today's Articles

People, Locations, Episodes

Fri, 11.16.2018

Texas Public Schools update the cause of the Civil War to Slavery for learning

Image: LA Johnson, NPR

*On this date in 2018, the Texas Board of Education voted to change the way its students learn about the Civil War.

Beginning in the 2019-2020 school year, students will be taught that slavery played a "central role" in the war.  The state's previous social studies standards listed three causes for the Civil War: sectionalism, states' rights and slavery, in that order. In September 2018, the board's Democrats proposed listing slavery as the only cause.   

Democratic board member Marisa Perez-Diaz, from San Antonio, said at a board meeting "What the use of 'states' rights' is doing is essentially blanketing, or skirting, the real foundational issue, which is slavery."  Republican board member David Bradley, from Beaumont, argued for keeping the other causes in the curriculum. He said, "Each state had differences and made individual decisions as to whether or not to join into the conflict, correct? I mean, that's the definition of states' rights."  In the end, the Republican-led board landed on a compromise: Students will be taught about "the central role of the expansion of slavery in causing sectionalism, disagreements over states' rights and the Civil War."

Houston Democrat Lawrence Allen Jr., the board's only African American member, helped write the new language. He believes it draws a straighter line between slavery and the Civil War than the previous standards did.  

Reference:

NPR

New Poem Each Day

Poetry Corner

Amos is a shepherd of suffering sheep; A pastor preaching in the depths of Alabama Preaching social justice to the Southland Preaching to the poor a new gospel of love With words... AMOS 1963 by Margaret Walker
Read More