NPR logo Arizona Gov Signs Ethnic-Studies Ban


Arizona Gov Signs Ethnic-Studies Ban

With the bonfire of controversy over its anti-illegal immigration law still burning strong, Arizona got more tinder going on another controversy Tuesday when Gov. Jan Brewer signed into law a ban on ethnic studies in the state's schools.

The legislation was specifically targeted at high schools in the Tucson Unified School District with courses in Mexican American studies. Critics of those courses said they were used by activists in Tuscon to incite hatred, particularly of whites.

A fact sheet for House Bill 2281 gives the purpose of the bill thusly:

Prohibits public schools from including courses or classes, which promote the overthrow of the U.S. government or resentment towards a race or class of people, and specifies rules pertaining to pupil disciplinary proceedings are not to be based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin or ancestry.

The law has certain exceptions, such as for native Americans, for instance.