If there is anyone making bold moves in education, it’s Ryan Walters, Oklahoma Superintendent. Walters is cutting ties with many established organizations, such as the Oklahoma State School Board Association and the American Library Association.
Walters is also supportive of schools hanging the 10 Commandments up in classrooms. He tells me in this podcast that he’s also pursuing bringing back some kind of prayer in schools. Walters also recently announced plans to ban Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiatives in schools. For his efforts, Walters is getting a lot of heat from the Left. One anonymous group that calls itself Families for Liberty is pushing for his impeachment, calling him a “clear and present danger” to Oklahoma’s public schools. The group listed a litany of items, but their accusation that Walters distributed pornography makes their whole attempt suspect. After all, the pornography is the same content inside books that the Left is making available to K-12 children. Walters says that books such as Gender Queer and Flamer were found inside Oklahoma schools. If these photos are appropriate for kids, why not for adults?
This is a wide-ranging conversation with Walters. I hope you enjoy it.
Some highlights we cover:
— How the teaching of history has evolved. Walters taught history for eight years.
— How his backing of Universal School Choice has expanded school options, including the emergence of micro schools. With School Choice, residents get $7500 per student to apply to charter schools, private schools, tutors and homeschooling. Today, each child costs the state about $10,000. Walters also talks about how the expansion of options has helped rural communities.
— The legal standing behind his support for the 10 Commandments in school and bringing in chaplains as alternative resources to guidance counselors.
— The indoctrination in schools.
— Whether Walters would consider himself a Christian Nationalist. He says the teachers unions like to paint him in that way. The term has taken on a negative connotation equating any support for religious liberty as support for a theocracy. Walters says [slightly edited] “We need to have our kids understand our foundational values. We’re not telling people what they have to believe. We’re trying to protect people’s religious freedoms. We’re not demanding any type of behavior. We’re pushing back on DEI that says your skin color defines you.”
— The illegality of subjecting fourth graders to an “Equity Lesson” to understand why a school staffer was undergoing surgery to change genders. Walters said this would be illegal in his state because teachers and administrators are not allowed to speak to children about transgenderism without first getting permission from parents.
— New legislation to enforce the monitoring of curriculum and school policies and activities to ensure kids are not taught to be confused about their gender and to have contempt for our country.
— Attracting the best teaches with bonuses and why the teachers’ unions oppose giving teachers money based on merit.
Listen to the podcast to learn Walter’s KPIs.