State representative introduces bill that would ban instruction of critical race theory in Ohio’s schools

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Published: May. 25, 2021 at 4:13 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - A Republican lawmaker introduced a proposal on Tuesday that, if passed, would prohibit the instruction of critical race theory in Ohio’s K-12 schools.

House Bill 322 was introduced by State Rep. Don Jones, who said the bill would ban schools and state agencies from teaching the concept, which focuses on the ongoing effects of systemic racism in the United States and how slavery shaped American history.

The state lawmaker released the following statement:

“Critical race theory is a dangerous and flat-out wrong theory. It is designed to look at everything from a ‘race first’ lens, which is the very definition of racism. CRT claiming to fight racism is laughable. Students should not be asked to ‘examine their whiteness’ or ‘check their privilege. This anti-American doctrine has no place in Ohio’s schools since we passed our founding documents curriculum mandating the Declaration of Independence, Northwest Ordinance, Ohio Constitution and the U.S. Constitution be taught to all students. CRT flies in the face of all of these documents, which as President Lincoln said are ‘based on the proposition that all men are created equal.’ We must protect the integrity of our education system in order to ensure that Ohio’s youth is receiving a top-tier education, which will not be possible if CRT is allowed to be taught in our schools.”

State Rep. Don Jones (R-Freeport)

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost also joined the call to prohibit critical race theory in school curriculum. He called the teachings “baseless” and signed on to a letter to President Joe Biden’s administration urging a review.

“We need to learn from the real evils of slavery and racism, but these proposals will only create more misunderstanding,” Attorney General Yost said. “Critical race theory is nothing more than ideology posing as history and we should not confuse the two.”

Proponents of critical race instruction argue that it is necessary to broaden the education of slavery in the United States and prepare students for the current role of race in America.

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