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Monroe Federation of Teachers opposes bills limiting how race is taught in K-12 schools

“I think our children should know all facets of history,” explained President Sandie Lollie. “The good, the bad, and the ugly.”
Published: May. 17, 2022 at 10:10 PM CDT
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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - The Monroe Federation of Teachers is coming out against a pair of bills to guide how race is taught in K-12 public schools in Louisiana.

“As an educator, as a teacher, we believe in teaching those things that are comfortable and some things that are not comfortable,” explained President Sandie Lollie.

Lollie believes legislation addressing what can be discussed is an attempt to ignore history.

“I think as a teacher and as an educator, it is left up to us to teach history,” Lollie told KNOE. “You can call it what you like, but history is what it is. Some is pleasant. Some is good. Some is not so good. Some is up. Some is down.”

The bill’s author, Representative Ray Garofalo, says the bill would ban teachers from teaching that one race is inferior or that the United States is inherently racist.

“They’re not set up so we can indoctrinate our students into a political way of thinking,” Garofalo told the House Education Committee on May 17. “From the research that I am doing, it seems like there’s a lot of the indoctrination going on, and I think we need do everything we can to stop that indoctrination.”

Garofalo claims he’s received hundreds of letters from constituents claiming students are being made to feel bad about their race.

“No individual should be made to feel discomfort, pain, guilt or anguish or any other form of psychological distress, and I’m quoting directly from the bill,” explained Garofalo. “We shouldn’t subject our students to any of that.”

Lollie adds uncomfortable conversations enhance the learning process.

“When we learn the good, and the bad, and the ugly about history, we can then try to educate our children to do better. To learn better,” said Lollie.

Both bills were involuntarily deferred, effectively killing their chance at passage.

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