Gov. Noem signs Executive Order restricting Critical Race Theory
PIERRE, S.D. — Governor Kristi Noem signed an Executive Order Tuesday that restricts the teaching of Critical Race Theory in grades K-12 in South Dakota.
Executive Order 2022-02 restricts Critical Race Theory in ways such as the Department of Education not compelling employees, students, or teachers to personally affirm, adopt, or adhere to inherently divisive concepts, and the Secretary of Education will review all policies within DOE to identify if any promote inherently divisive concepts.
“Political indoctrination has no place in our classrooms,” said Gov. Noem. “Our children will not be taught that they are racists or that they are victims, and they will not be compelled to feel responsible for the mistakes of their ancestors. We will guarantee that our students learn America’s true and honest history – that includes both our triumphs and our mistakes.”
Other ways the order restricts Critical Race Theory include:
- DOE will review other materials and trainings to identify if any promote or endorse inherently divisive concepts.
- If any policies, materials, or trainings promote inherently divisive concepts, they shall end or be removed no later than October 1.
- Directs the Board of Education Standards to ensure South Dakota Content Standards do not promote inherently divisive concepts.
“Inherently divisive concepts” for the purpose of this Executive Order means advancing any ideas in violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
In the 2022 legislative session, Gov. Noem House Bill 1012 to block mandatory Critical Race Theory trainings and orientations at colleges in South Dakota. She also signed Executive Order 2021-11 last year that blocked federal civics and history grants due to concerns with ties to Critical Race Theory.
Gov. Noem worked with the Board of Regents in the past to ensure that Critical Race Theory will not be the basis of education in South Dakota schools.