(editor: Dr. Saxton, PhD. Harvard and I collaborated on “The Teacher’s Guide to Islam-Biased Textbooks ” released last month. The Guide has been sent to over 50,000 school boards in the United States in order to correct misleading and biased material contained in 25 national k-12 textbooks. Dr. Saxton describes his successful meeting with the Palm Beach School Board, and their agreement to use the CFNS Teacher’s Guide to correct the errors in the misleading textbooks.)
Florida is the third largest buyer of elementary and high school textbooks in the nation – and its Palm Beach County (PBC) school district is the country’s 11th largest. What happens here with K-12 textbooks sets an example for all of America.
On March 28, 2012, CFNS publicly addressed the Palm Beach County School Board regarding a textbook whose content it views as Islam-biased and anti-Israel. Here are excerpts from the statement of CFNS’s Chairman.
“Good afternoon. I am Dr. William A. Saxton, and I am Chairman of Citizens for National Security, an all-volunteer, nonprofit 501(c)(3) Public Charity.
Thank you for allowing me these few minutes.
I am here to oppose the County’s local adoption and purchase of the 2013 world history textbook known as WORLD HISTORY, by Ellis et al, published by Pearson Prentice Hall.
Our organization has performed research on K-12 history and geography textbooks for over three years and published the results in two landmark documents.
We have found considerable misinformation, bias and omissions in the content of some of textbooks used in Palm Beach County and elsewhere in the past – and now including this new proposed textbook.
More specifically, we have found this textbook’s content to contain bias in favor of Islam, at the expense of Christianity and Judaism – and to be similarly biased against Israel.
Almost three months ago, a meeting was organized by some of your County’s curriculum specialists with the publisher’s representative in Loxahatchee – at which I was invited to participate – in order to address the flawed content.
This was a model for the way these issues should be addressed. It’s the way it should be done, and serves as a fine example for the rest of the country.
After 4-1/2 hours, there was unanimous agreement on more-correct language by all present – including the publisher’s representative.
But unfortunately, no recommendations were accepted back at Pearson. The book stands as originally written. And we never even got to the most egregious Islam bias that is summarized here in my handouts.
I also call your attention to our latest resource – a 91-page Teacher’s Guide that addresses the pro-Islam, anti-Israel, content of this textbook [Pearson Prentice Hall’s 2013 “WORLD HISTORY” to which CFNS is opposed] in greater detail – and addresses other flawed textbooks as well.
I only have one copy of this to leave for you, but will make other copies available at your request. Or, you may download your own copies from our Web site – www.CFNS.US or www.CITIZENSFORNATIONALSECURITY.US.
Thank you, once again, for your time.”
When Dr. Saxton concluded, Board members discussed his statement openly for almost 25 minutes. According to veteran observers in the crowded public gallery, this was an unusual occurrence for that type of School Board meeting. The Board was most hospitable and courteous to Dr. Saxton, with members commending and thanking him on several occasions for bringing the textbook matter to their attention.
CFNS has been advised that if the Pearson textbook does ultimately get used in Palm Beach County, its curriculum specialists will convene “professional development” training for teachers who will be briefed about the pro-Islam and anti-Israel misinformation and intentional omissions. We are told that the cornerstone for these sessions will be our recently released, CFNS-authored “Teacher’s Guide for Corrections to Islam-Biased Content in Florida’s K-12 Textbooks”!
Previously, CFNS had succeeded in convincing Palm Beach County school officials NOT to purchase “Modern World: Patterns of Interaction,” arguably the most egregious of all Islam-biased high-school textbooks.
CFNS had also played a major role in getting an agreement from publisher McGraw-Hill to make requested content changes regarding Islam and Israel in its new textbook, “World Geography and Cultures.”