The Washington PostThe Washington Post

An explosion of culture war laws is changing schools. Here's how.

By Hannah Natanson, Clara Ence Morse, Anu Narayanswamy and Christina Brause

18 Oct 2022 · 10 min read

A wave of new state laws meant to alter how students learn and the rights they have at school has taken effect across nearly half the country, a Washington Post analysis has found, as part of the rising battle over cultural values in American education.

Over the past three academic years, legislators in 45 states proposed 283 laws that either sought to restrict what teachers can say about race, racism and American history; to change how instructors can teach about gender identity, sexuality and LGBTQ issues; to boost parents' rights over their children's education; to limit students' access to school libraries and books; to circumscribe the rights of transgender students; and/or to promote what legislators defined as a "patriotic" education.

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