Why The Board of Education Is Calling For Academic Review of State Textbooks

One board member has called for an outside review of the state’s textbooks, to catch any errors that may have been missed in their vetting process.

By Alain StephensNovember 17, 2015 2:26 pm

Remember the Houston mom who challenged textbook maker McGraw-Hill? She criticized the company for textbooks that called slaves “workers.”

It seems the State Board of Education hasn’t forgotten.

Thomas Ratliff, a Republican board member, has called for outside academics to review the facts in the board’s chosen textbooks to catch any errors that may have slipped through – like the “workers” language in that passage about slavery.

Will Weissert, head of the the Associated Press’ Austin bureau, has been following the story.

“[Ratliff] also said there’s some other egregious examples of factual errors that have slipped through the board vetting process for textbooks,” Weissert says. “He’d like to have outside experts take a look and try to clear some of those up before they get into classrooms.”

What you’ll hear in this segment:

– What the outside review process would affect as well as what wouldn’t be affected, including curriculum and lesson planning

– Why Texas has an outsize influence on what goes into textbooks nationwide

– How incorporating an outside review could lead to more impartial practices down the road