State Capitol Lincoln

Senators call for a legislative investigation into the Nebraska Department of Education

State Capitol Lincoln

Senator Dave Murman of Glenvil was joined Monday by Hastings Senator Steve Halloran, Elmwood Senator Rob Clements, Bayard Senator Steve Erdman and
Adams Senator Myron Dorn. They held a joint press conference in the State Capitol Rotunda to discuss their call for a legislative investigation into the Nebraska Department of Education.

Over the last few years, the Nebraska Department of Education has received money from the federal government’s Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund to help schools rebound from COVID-19. With this money, the Department created an online resource hub known as “Launch Nebraska” that could be accessed by any internet user. After a year of operation, Launch Nebraska appears to have shifted its focus, and that is what prompted the call for an investigation.

“The website provided ‘professional resource and learning links’ targeted toward educators and members of the education administration. With this, the Nebraska Department of Education guided educators to the ‘Culturally Responsive Education’ hub, where educators were encouraged to ‘Take Action’ and provided with a PDF document titled ‘Winning Racial Justice In Our Schools: Resisting the Right Wing Attacks On Critical Race Theory,’” said Murman. “This comes at a time when ACT scores for the previous year have been reported as the lowest in at least a decade. In Nebraska, 20% of tested graduates met all four ACT benchmarks for college percent, which is down from 23% a year earlier.”

The Education Department has come under fire in recent months because of its proposed Comprehensive Sex Education standards. Murman says that the uncovered documents show unequivocally that the Department has also been promoting Critical Race Theory
for at least a full school year.

"It has become clear that the Nebraska Department of Education and Launch Nebraska have gone off the rails from the original intent of this
program,” said Murman. “That’s why I am calling for a legislative investigation into the Nebraska Department of Education. The people of Nebraska, and certainly in my district in south-central Nebraska, expect our schools to teach their kids the basics: math, reading, science, civics, history, writing, and financial literacy, and prepare students for higher education or a job in the trades.”

Senator Murman said that there should never be another dime of taxpayer money that goes to a state-employed agency that is determined to participate in political activity.

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