Fight over Williamson County Schools textbook goes to Capitol Hill
June 19, 2013 04:52 PM
Reported By Chris Bundgaard, Reporter - bio | email
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -
The fight over a Williamson County Schools textbook branded by some as "anti-Semitic" was taken to Tennessee's Capitol Hill Wednesday.
Williamson County school parent Laurie Cardoza-Moore, who has filed a complaint about the textbook with the Williamson County School Board, testified before a joint session of the legislature's Government Operations Sub-Committee.
She told the panel of what she considers "anti-Jewish" and "anti-Israel" in the textbook called "The Cultural Landscape: An Introduction to Human Geography."
"The textbook did not portray an accurate historical or archeological perspective based about all the information available about the Arab-Israeli conflict," said Cardoza-Moore.
In particular, she cited a passage about whether an Israeli cafe bombing was an act of terrorism or retaliation for military action against Palestinians.
After citing the various passages in the geography book, she said parents should have a spot on the State Textbook Commission which initially makes a recommendation to the State Board of Education which then sends a list of approved textbooks that can be chosen by local school districts.
Cardoza-Moore also cited a lack of public comment opportunity about textbooks chosen at the local level.
Rep. Glen Casada, who was on the sub-committee, says that those recommendations and approval of textbooks by the State are important because "only about six-percent of the textbooks are rejected at a local level."
The issue was part of a hearing to determine what changes should be made to the State Textbook Commission or if it should even continue to exist.
Lawmakers on the panel decided to recommend to the full committee that the commission be extended one year.
Cardoza-Moore's complaint is being reviewed by Williamson County School Board committee.
She says there are 17 other books that also have questionable bias that are being used in Tennessee schools.