A bill designed to prevent what lawmakers claim is a rash of indoctrination in Idaho’s schools passed the Senate Monday and is making its way to the governor’s desk.
House Bill 377 would prohibit schools — from K-12 to community colleges and public universities — from compelling students to adhere to or believe that any race, sex, ethnicity, religion or national origin is better than another, and that students who belong to such a category are not responsible for those categories’ actions of the past.
“Every individual should be treated equally under the law,” Sen. Jim Rice, R-Caldwell, said on the Senate floor. “No one should be compelled to think a certain way because someone else does.”
The proposed law was born out of concerns from House members who held up an appropriations bill dedicated to teacher pay unless the notion of indoctrination was addressed. Specifically, those lawmakers — and the language in HB 377 — rail against critical race theory. Critical race theory is an activist scholarly theory that suggests racial power imbalances are so widespread in our national story that they touch virtually every corner of our way of life.
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