Texas Board of Education votes to remove Hillary Clinton from history curriculum

Texas Board of Education votes to remove Hillary Clinton from history curriculum

The Texas State Board of Education voted to remove several historical figures, including Hillary Clinton and Helen Keller, from the state's social studies curriculum on Friday, reported the Dallas Morning News.

The vote to remove Clinton and Keller came after a 15-member, board-nominated volunteer work group created a scale to grade historical figures, according to the outlet.

"Eliminating Clinton from the requirements will save teachers 30 minutes of instructional time, the work group estimated, and eliminating Keller will save 40 minutes", the newspaper reported.

Keller, who was blind and deaf, was known for her political activism, among other accomplishments. These decisions aren't set in stone: There's still a chance for the BOE to make changes before a final November vote.

For their part, the Texas Board of Education asserts that they are simply following the advice of the workgroup, which ranked Clinton and other deleted historical figures against a rubric to determine whether they are "essential" to learning about history, as part of an effort to ensure kids do not have to memorize too many names and dates. The group would ponder things like whether the historical figure triggered a watershed change or if he or she were from an underrepresented group. Clinton, the first woman in US history to win a presidential nomination by a major political party, only ranked a five.

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Keller received seven points out of 20. In high school history classes, students were required to "evaluate the contributions of significant political and social leaders in the United States".

The amendments to the statewide curriculum are bound to affect some 5.4 million public school students if adopted.

According to the Dallas Morning News, figures who received a flawless score and will remain as past of the curriculum include lawyer Barbara Jordan, a leader of the Civil Rights Movement, and former Texas governor Sam Houston. They include local members of the Texas Legislature, Stephen F. Austin, Barbara Jordan, Sam Houston, and Henry B. Gonzalez.

Curriculum controversies continue in Texas because hard-line conservatives have a continuing presence on the Board of Education, and they appoint people to the panels that recommend changes.

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