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Opinion | Gov. Bill Lee is determined to reshape education in Tennessee – but not in a way you might think

ABC 24 Political Analyst Otis Sanford delivers his Point of View on Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee's plan to reshape K-12 education in the state.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Governor Bill Lee is determined to reshape K-12 education in Tennesse, But not in the ways you might think.

Sure, Lee’s administration has offered up proposals to overhaul school funding and increase teacher pay.

But another plan that the governor mentioned in his recent state of the state address is getting public attention – because it is so extreme.

Lee plans to partner with Hillsdale College in Michigan for the conservative liberal arts school to develop a civics curriculum for Tennessee’s K-12 students.

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Another part of the plan that Lee did not talk about in his recent address calls for Hillsdale to also open up to 50 charter schools in the state.

That proposal definitely needs public debate – particularly since Lee’s private school voucher plan remains tied up in the courts. 

But my concern is with the civics curriculum. 

Lee is against teaching kids about the history of systemic racism in America – also called critical race theory. 

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He calls it a radical liberal agenda meant to divide – rather than unite. Now we know where Lee got that sentiment; from Hillsdale. 

The college’s website describes social justice and multicultural diversity as dehumanizing and discriminatory topics meant to pit one group against another.

With the conservative makeup of our legislature, Lee will probably get his way. But it’s difficult to ignore the hypocrisy of a governor who is so easily persuaded – by far right ideas. 

I’m Otis Sanford, and that’s my point of view.

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