The school district in Springboro, Ohio--halfway between Cincy and Dayton--is planning to offer a summer course on the Constitution taught by David Barton. Warren Throckmorton, one of the professors whose concerns about Barton's scholarship led Thomas Nelson to yank The Jefferson Lies last year, stumbled on this course yesterday. He managed to obtain a brochure as well.
The course is sponsored by the Institute on the Constitution, an outfit run by Michael Peroutka, the 2004 Constitution Party candidate. Peroutka has documented ties to white supremacist groups. According to the Human Rights Campaign, Peroutka is a prominent member of the League of the South, a neo-Confederate group that advocates having the South secede from the United States and calls white supremacy "healthy and Biblical." Eidsmoe himself has frequently spoken to white supremacist groups.
Throckmorton all but says--rightly--that this course is blatantly unconstitutional. And several area parents agree.
(W)hen parents looked at the attached flier and researched the names of the instructors, some became upset.This isn't the first time that the school board has gotten into trouble for trying to push a Christianist agenda. Just last month, it actually considered adding "creation science" to the curriculum.
Critics say the 12-week course that will be taught at the high school amounts to impermissible religious instruction.
"I googled some of the names, some of the groups that are teaching the classes, and of course my assumptions were correct in finding out it was a religion-based class," said parent Jenny Nijak.
A filer for the class, called the Institution of the Constitution, invites parents and students to learn "your godly American heritage and birthright," parents said.
"The fact that we're using public resources for something that is clearly promoting a political and religious agenda that appears to be unconstitutional as well as a waste of taxpayer dollars is unconscionable," said parent David Bowman.
Looks like it's past time to put a bug in these clowns' ears. Email the board at AllBoardofEducationMembers at springboro dot org. Also, those of you in the area may want to get ahold of the Ohio ACLU.