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Liberals Turn Against ‘Transparency’ When Parents Demand to See What Their Kids Are Being Taught

By Craig Bannister | January 21, 2022 | 9:07am EST
(Getty Images/Frederic J. Brown)

“There it is: they don't want you to know what's being taught to your children,” Manhattan Institute Senior Fellow Christopher F. Rufo tweeted Thursday, responding to an article by NBC News stoking fear that parents knowing what their kids are being taught in public schools will cause teachers to preemptively censor obscene material and radical indoctrination in their lesson plans.

“Conservative activists want schools to post lesson plans online, but free speech advocates warn such policies could lead to more censorship in K-12 schools,” the NBC News story warned Thursday, in an article about state initiatives to ensure “curriculum transparency.”

The article – originally titled “Anti-critical race theory activists have a new focus: Curriculum transparency” and later changed to “They fought critical race theory. Now they’re focusing on ‘curriculum transparency,’” reports that “lawmakers in at least 12 states have introduced legislation to require schools to post lists of all their teaching materials online, including books, articles and videos.”

In a subsequent email, Rufo posted a flashback to a tweet he posted earlier in the month, when he predicted that, “By moving to curriculum transparency, we will…bait the Left into opposing ‘transparency,’ which will raise the question: what are they trying to hide?”

Transparency has traditionally been demanded by liberal activists – but, now that it might expose teachers indoctrinating students with radical liberal ideologies, such as Critical Race Theory, leftists are invoking the specter of “censorship,” the article says, crediting Rufo for forcing liberals to denounce transparency in the name of their agenda.

Liberal teacher unions fear that transparency would prompt teachers to remove obscene books and race-baiting materials before parents even have a chance to voice objections to them, NBC News reports:

“But teachers, their unions and free speech advocates say the proposals would excessively scrutinize daily classwork and would lead teachers to pre-emptively pull potentially contentious materials to avoid drawing criticism. Parents and legislators have already started campaigns to remove books dealing with race and gender, citing passages they find obscene, after they found out that the books were available in school libraries and classrooms.”

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