Virginia Board of Education reviews proposed history, social science curriculum revisions

As parents are getting ready to send their children back into the classroom, Virginia's new board of education members met for the first time in public Wednesday to discuss the revisions being made to the history and social science curriculum.

The new board has 5 new members who were all appointed by Governor Glenn Youngkin. The other four were appointed by former Governor Ralph Northam.

At Wednesday's board meeting, which lasted the entire day, board members touched on different agenda items including reviewing how history and social science will be taught in Virginia classrooms.

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"These proposals include more coverage of black history and more inclusion and representation of minority groups in Virginia and U.S. history. These recommendations must remain in the revised standards," says Frank Callahan from the Virginia NAACP's Education Committee.

Speakers at Wednesday's meeting expressed that they want the board to finalize the 402-page draft that's been in the works for 2 years. But right now, the board members are still undergoing the review process for the changes made. 

Every seven years the board of education reviews the standards of learning - but speakers say this time around - the process is moving very slow.

Governor Glenn Youngkin stopped by Wednesday's meeting to address some concerns.

"I want to be very clear; I want us to teach all of our history in Virginia. The good and the bad," said Youngkin. "We have an extraordinary history. An extraordinary history that in fact that is the history not just of the Commonwealth of Virginia but of the country.

Of the changes one in particular stands out to some people including Virginia's Attorney General Jason Miyares.

The change would remove a lesson on James Madison being called the father of the constitution. In a tweet, Miyares called the proposed change "outrageous."

Governor Youngkin says that this review is "an opportunity for us to set a standard to educate our children in all of the lessons. This is a moment for us to take a serious look at how we teach our most important topic."

A committee of people including educators, parents, students and historians worked on the proposed changes.

You can see the full draft of proposed change here.