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Week in Review: Shakedown Shutdown

May 20, 2023

$1,300 to find out what your children are reading in school? Not if Goldwater has anything to say about it.

The shakedown highlights a problem that parents around the country are facing: Last year, the Fort Worth Independent School District in Texas told two moms it would take a whopping 84.5 hours of labor and cost $1,267.50 to fulfill their simple public records requests for K-12 book lists. But after Goldwater’s American Freedom Network (AFN) of pro bono attorneys challenged these illegal, prohibitive fees with the Texas Attorney General’s Office, the district retreated and gave parents the answers they deserve.

The Goldwater Institute is empowering parents nationwide to find out what’s happening in their children’s schools. Goldwater’s Ask Your School Now website gives parents the tools they need to file effective public records requests, and AFN attorneys stand ready to help parents in every state access the information they’re entitled to. Moreover, Goldwater’s Academic Transparency reform requires public schools to post learning materials online so that parents can easily access them within seconds.

Parents deserve better than shakedowns—so Goldwater is helping them find answers.

Read more at In Defense of Liberty

Gov. DeSantis and Goldwater Rein in Radical DEI

Radical, racist political ideologies are crippling higher education, but the Goldwater Institute is showing the country how to rein in the “diversity, equity, and inclusion” (DEI) regime. This week, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into law Goldwater’s nation-leading reform to prohibit the use of political litmus tests at public colleges and universities.

Colleges are increasingly requiring these political litmus tests on faculty job applications (in the form of DEI or “diversity” statements) to screen out insufficiently progressive candidates. Yet they infringe on academic freedom, violate the First Amendment, and turn public higher education institutions into leftist echo chambers.

There’s a better way. “We’re going to elevate merit and achievement above identification with certain groups,” Gov. DeSantis said.

The Institute’s newly enacted reform complements Goldwater’s “Freedom from Indoctrination Act,” which keeps students from being forced into activist-driven programs of social conditioning, and our plan to abolish DEI bureaucracies, which has shaped legislation advancing in Texas and elsewhere. As Goldwater Director of Education Policy Matt Beienburg writes at Townhall, these “initiatives are poised to reclaim American higher education and put DEI on the path to extinction.”

Read more at In Defense of Liberty.

Comply…or Else

Progressive activists are also trying to force K-12 students and teachers alike to bend the knee to their racist agenda. But the Goldwater Institute is challenging the left’s scheme to take over our education system.

Case in point: a Missouri school district ordered two public school employees to participate in and even endorse an “anti-racism” training program that instructed them to treat students differently based on their race and claimed that all white people are inherently racist. This week, Goldwater spearheaded a coalition of allied groups in filing a brief that urges the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold the employees’ First Amendment freedoms. “Since being labeled a racist can be a career-ending accusation regardless of the actual facts, any employee required to attend one of these trainings would have believed that to express an opinion would be extremely risky,” Goldwater Vice President for Legal Affairs Timothy Sandefur writes at In Defense of Liberty.

“Anti-racism” runs contrary to one of the basic principles of our constitutional republic: that everyone should be treated the same regardless of race. It has no place in taxpayer-funded schools, especially when the government bans any sort of dissent. That’s why Goldwater is fighting this toxic ideology—and restoring America’s founding ideals.

Read more at In Defense of Liberty.



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