Idaho Bill: “Atlas Shrugged” To Be Required Reading For Students

Idaho State Senator John Goedde (R) introduced legislation on Tuesday that would require Idaho secondary student to read and pass an exam on the 1957 novel “Atlas Shrugged” by famed author Ayn Rand. The legislation is though to be mostly a symbolic move to teach “personal responsibility.”

The bill reads:

“The student shall obtain a passing grade on the examination in order to satisfy the graduation requirement provided for in this section. Such examination shall be approved by the state department of education.”

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According to Goedde, the bill is more of a protest to the State Board of Education’s decision to roll back online class requirements.

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“Traditionally in Idaho, the State Board of Education sets graduation requirements in rule,” Goedde wrote in an email to Fox News on Thursday. “They recently repealed a rule dealing with online class requirements and failed to move another rule forward dealing with administrators demonstrating proficiency in evaluating teachers. I felt both were important and wanted to remind them that the legislature could also set graduation standards.”

Goedde actually told State Senator Bob Nonini (R) “That book made my son a Republican.” He went on to say, “He’s not a practicing Republican. But it certainly made him a conservative.”

Betsy Z. Russell writes,

The bill’s introduction marks a contrast, as Idaho Senate committees have sometimes refused to introduce serious legislation because they felt it wouldn’t pass. An example is last year’s bill to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation; despite a statewide outpouring of support for the measure, the Senate State Affairs Committee voted along party lines against introducing it.

The State Board of Education repealed the online-class graduation requirement Nov. 19 on a 7-1 vote; state schools Superintendent Tom Luna made the motion, saying, “Proposition 3 was overturned by the voters.”

Proposition 3 called for a laptop computer for every high school student and a new focus on online learning, among other changes. Goedde was the lead Senate sponsor of that legislation, which implemented a major portion of Luna’s “Students Come First” school reform laws.

Those laws, which also included rolling back collective bargaining rights for teachers and imposing a new merit pay system, all were overturned by Idaho voters in November.

Goedde wrote, “I have no intention of pursuing this requirement. I am sorry but I don’t see a story here.”

Actually there is a story. Let me make a point here. While he may not take this serious, the fact is the state is constantly telling us how our children should be educated is a major problem. They do not have the right or the jurisdiction to dictate such things. That is the parents’ responsibility. This is one of the reasons I stand in opposition to state run education.

With that said, yes children should be learning personal responsibility, and I think they can learn such in a book such as Rand’s, but it’s interesting to me that one would use a book written by an atheist (though I enjoyed the book I admit – also I’ve enjoyed the films), but they will not promote the reading of the Bible which also addresses the issues of personal responsibility and lots more. The state’s worldview that is taught is vastly different than that of the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments and therefore are at loggerheads.

If nothing else children should be able to know what the law of the land, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, along with the Declaration of Independence are.

It’s a shame when people you don’t even know take unto themselves the authority to determine what is best to teach your children, isn’t it? Have you had enough of them doing it America? or will you continue to send your precious little ones to the statist public education system? The choice and the responsibility is yours.

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