TRENTON, N.J. — Have you heard anything about S2978, a project of New Jersey State Senator Teresa Ruiz (D-Essex)?
Probably not. It isn’t getting much attention but it’s moving through the legislature and if your child attends a K-12 New Jersey school, you had better start paying attention.
What it would do: compel the N.J. Department of Education “to maintain list of textbook vendors that use inclusive material and school districts to use textbooks from those vendors.”
It’s as creepy and 1984-ish as it sounds. According to the language of the proposed law, “‘[i]nclusive material’ means content in a textbook that [reflects diversity in various categories including] accurately portrays the diversity of our society, in such areas as gender, race, ethnicity, disability, gender identity or expression, and sexual orientation.”
This isn’t a simple matter of suggested political correctness. Deviations from the approved list would require approval from the Commissioner, dramatically expanding the power of the state to decide not just how your child learns but what she or she should believe.
There’s no word yet when the companion Assembly bill will receive a hearing.
We’ll keep you apprised of any developments.