#tellEWA Member Stories (October 7-13)

Here’s what we’re reading by EWA members this week.

As part of “the Johns Committee,” Florida lawmakers and investigators searched the state’s public universities for evidence of homosexuality and communism in the 1950s and 1960s, steamrolling countless professors and students. The Chronicle of Higher Education’s Emma Pettit explains how the past reflects today’s increasingly politicized universities.

“These standards maintain a narrative of white colonial Christian men being the heroes and saviors of the nation.” Teachers and national social studies groups are concerned about a Colorado school board member’s proposal to update the state’s social studies standards to focus on Western civilization, American exceptionalism, patriotism and Christianity. Jenny Brundin of Colorado Public Radio details the proposed curriculum, its conservative creators, why the state is currently revising its social studies courses, and what’s next.

The U.S. Department of Education previewed its highly anticipated student loan forgiveness application, which is expected to be available by the end of October. Reporting for ABC News, Arthur Jones II explains what borrowers can expect from the two-part form that will be available in both English and Spanish.

A growing number of Idaho parents opted their children out of childhood immunizations for measles, polio, whooping cough and chickenpox. Analyzing the numbers for Idaho Education News, Kevin Richert shares what contributed to the downward trend and describes how staffing shortages at the local health department affect school-level data.

Texas, Alabama, Oklahoma and Florida school districts are hiring less-experienced or unqualified teachers to fill vacancies. Education Lab reporters Talia Richman of The Dallas Morning News and Trisha Powell Crain of AL.com track this trend across the South, explaining how the “longtime problem” began and its consequences.

Hispanic families in the U.S. are increasingly home-schooling their children for a variety of reasons, such as ensuring they’re not marginalized and providing them with a safe space. The trend coincides with the growth of Hispanic families in Georgia and school districts ill-equipped to meet students’ cultural and linguistic needs, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Nimra Ahmad reports.