by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Echoing recent actions from N.C. Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is taking aim at inappropriate reading material in public schools. Elizabeth Faddis reports for the Washington Examiner.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott called on the Texas Associated of School Boards to remove “clearly pornographic” content found in school libraries.
“A growing number of parents of Texas students are becoming increasingly alarmed about some of the books and other content found in public school libraries,” the Republican said in a letter addressed to TASB Executive Director Dan Troxell.
Certain books contain “clearly pornographic images and substance that have no place in the Texas public school system,” Abbott said, adding that parents “have the right to shield their children from obscene content.”
“Your organization’s members have an obligation to determine the extent to which such materials exist or are used in our schools and to remove any such content,” Abbott said. “You must also ensure transparency about the materials being taught in the classroom and offered in school libraries.”
Abbott’s letter to Troxell follows a letter Republican Texas state Rep. Matt Krause, the chairman of the House Committee on General Investigating, sent notifying the Texas Education Agency about opening an investigation and asking districts to check their school libraries and classrooms for the titles of 850 books listed in the letter, according to the Texas Tribune.
Krause, a candidate for Texas attorney general, asked each of the school districts to identify any other books which may “contain material that might make students feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress” by either unconsciously or consciously saying that students may be “inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive” based off of their race or sex. Additionally, Krause asked the school districts to disclose how much money was spent on the books.