NH Governor condemns ‘bonus’ proposal for teachers

CONCORD, NH — Republican Governor Chris Sununu on Thursday denounced a conservative group offering to pay $500 for the first person to “catch” a public school teacher in violation of New Hampshire’s new limits on discuss systemic racism and other topics.

Sununu has opposed an earlier version of the law that repeats the Trump administration’s order and sought to ban discussion of “divisive concepts” in schools. But then he advocated language being included in the state budget ‘that would ban teaching children that they are inferior, racist, sexist or oppressed by race, gender or other characteristics. their other.

After the state Department of Education set up a website last week to collect complaints against teachers, New Hampshire’s Moms for Liberty chapter tweeted “We’ve got $500 for the first person to arrest a teacher.” public school officials violate this law.” In a follow-up, the conservative parents’ organization told supporters to designate online donations as “CRT Bounty’s,” referring to the key racial theory.

“The Governor condemns the tweet mentioning ‘bonus’ and any other form of financial incentive as completely inappropriate and out of place,” Sununu spokesman Ben Vihstadt said in a statement. email.

Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut offered mild criticism when asked this week about the tweets.

“I encourage people to be extra careful on social media,” he said in an interview. “There’s a lot of rhetoric on social media that isn’t helpful or constructive.”

Republicans enacted the legislation as an attempt to strengthen anti-discrimination laws and said it would allow such concepts to be taught in historical contexts. But Democrats say it would discourage the teaching of implicit bias as well as structured racism and sexism.

Although the Department of Education has published the report form online, complaints will go directly to the state Human Rights Commission, which may dismiss or investigate further. The state Board of Education can use decisions against teachers to discipline them, including revoking licenses.

Deb Howes, president of the American Federation of Teachers of New Hampshire, accused Edelblut of launching a “war on teachers”. And the New Hampshire Association of School Administrators is urging Sununu to work with educators and families to clarify what would be considered appropriate teaching about history and race relations. It called on Sununu to denounce the “bounty” tweets on Wednesday.

“Our state is at a turning point. Do we allow these attacks to continue to keep our good teachers and administrators committed to our schools? Do we value our schools as community assets, or are they merely the Commissioner’s political punching bag? ‘ the association said in a statement.

Edelblut countered that the new reporting process protects teachers because it establishes a neutral process for dealing with complaints. He likens it to similar systems set up to handle claims against other licensed professionals, from lawyers to doctors to estheticians.

“The shock is related to the fact that this is a syndicated site that doesn’t seem to match what is happening in the rest of the professional world,” he said. “The cosmetology industry doesn’t consider this an attack on the cosmetology industry because someone let someone file a complaint.”

Critical race theory has become a rallying cry for some conservatives who are concerned with how schools address diversity and inclusion. Theory is a way of analyzing American history through a racist lens but is not in itself a fixture of K-12 instruction.


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