Kristi Noem on Education
Re-instill right to pray in school, absent far too long
We began here today with a prayer asking for God's grace and guidance. Yet in our public schools, prayer is absent--forbidden. I am introducing legislation that would allow for a moment of silence at the beginning of each school day.
Students can choose to reflect on the upcoming day or have a quiet moment--they can also exercise their First Amendment right to pray. We will protect the freedom to worship and re-instill a right that has been absent for far too long in our schools.
Source: 2022 State of the State Address to South Dakota legislature
, Jan 11, 2022
Teach true, honest history not radical Critical Race Theory
We have to make sure our children know America's promise. We have to teach them the true, honest history of our country. In state after state children are being exposed to radical political ideologies like Critical Race Theory. Our state supports
opportunity for all. We don't teach our children to be divisive and organize them into separate groups based on skin color. I am bringing legislation this year to enshrine these values and protect our students from hatred and division.
Source: 2022 State of the State Address to South Dakota legislature
, Jan 11, 2022
Signed 1776 Pledge; country does not have racism in its DNA
I was the very first candidate in this entire country to sign on to the 1776 Pledge, recognizing that we needed to teach our kids true honest history. That the 1619 Project, critical race theory, is hate, division, and it's not American. It's offensive.
We do not have racism in our DNA in this country. We love each other, and everybody deserves to be treated equally. Everyone who's running for office needs to embrace our honest history of America and America that was formed for freedom.
Source: Speech transcript from 2021 CPAC Conference
, Jul 11, 2021
Root cause of insurrection was lack of civic education
Noem blamed an inadequate education in American civics as "the root cause" of the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, while making no mention of President Donald Trump's role in the attack that sent Congress into hiding. The Republican governor is a close
ally of the president and supported his efforts to contest the results of the presidential election. Since Trump's supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol, Noem has tried to deflect blame from the president while calling for an end to political
violence. "We have an opportunity to address the root cause of this problem: we must reform young Americans' civic education," Noem said.
In a recent op-ed in The Federalist, she responded to Republicans blaming Trump for the attacks by saying, "If
that's all we get out of this, our future will be no different than our past." Noem called the storming of the Capitol appalling and "horrible to watch." But she did not address Trump's false allegations for weeks that the election had been stolen.
Source: Associated Press on Jan. 6th insurrection
, Jan 15, 2021
Schools should teach is US is most special nation in history
I have tasked my administration with creating instructional materials and classroom resources on America's founding, our nation's history, and the state's history. We must also do a better job educating teachers on these three subjects.
Through all of this, our common mission and key objective needs to be explaining why the United States of America is the most special nation in the history of the world.
Source: 2021 State of the State Address to South Dakota legislature
, Jan 12, 2021
Voted YES on reauthorizing the DC opportunity scholarship program.
Congressional Summary:The SOAR Act award five-year grants on a competitive basis to nonprofit organizations to carry out an expanded school choice opportunities to students who are District of Columbia residents and who come from households:
Provides funds to the Mayor of DC, if the Mayor agrees to specified requirements, for:
- receiving assistance under the supplemental nutrition assistance program; or
- with incomes not exceeding 185% of the poverty line.
- the DC public schools to improve public education, and
- the DC public charter schools to improve and expand quality public charter schools.
Proponent's Argument for voting Yes:
[Rep. Bishop, R-UT]: In 1996, Congress insisted upon a charter school program in DC. You will hear from both sides of the aisle recognition of the great value that that program has, and justifiably so. There is a waiting list in DC for those charter schools.
This bill increases the percentage of funding going to charter schools in the District. In 2003, an Opportunity Scholarship was instituted, at the insistence of Congress. Again, there was a waiting list of people wanting the opportunity; disadvantaged kids who wanted the opportunity that this scholarship afforded them. There were 216 kids at the time scheduled to enter the program who were not allowed; the bill remedies that.
Opponent's Argument for voting No:
Reference: Scholarships for Opportunity and Results Act (SOAR);
; vote number 11-HV200
on Mar 30, 2011
[Rep. Hastings, D-FL]: In the last 41 years voters have rejected private school vouchers every time they have been proposed. In 1981, 89% of the people in a referendum in DC voted against vouchers. So how dare we come here to tell these people that we are going to thrust upon them something they don't want without a single public official in this community being consulted. Congress' oversight of the District is not an excuse for political pandering to the Republicans' special interest of the day du jour.
$110M per year to teach abstinence in public schools.
Noem co-sponsored Abstinence Education Reallocation Act
Congressional Summary:Authorizes the Administrator of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to award grants for qualified sexual risk avoidance education to youth and their parents. Requires such education to meet certain criteria, including:
Gives priority to programs that serve youth ages 12 to 19 and that will promote the protective benefits of parent-child communication regarding healthy sexual decisionmaking.
- being age-appropriate, medically accurate, and evidence-based;
- teaching the skills and benefits of sexual abstinence as the optimal sexual health behavior for youth; and
- teaching the benefits of refraining from nonmarital sexual activity, the advantage of reserving sexual activity for marriage, and the foundational components of a healthy relationship.
Opponent's argument against bill: (Nick Wing on Huffington Post)
How much could it cost to keep teenagers from having sex? More than $100 million per year over the course of five years would be a good starting place, according to the Abstinence Education Reallocation Act. The bill seeks to award $550 million in Affordable Care Act grants over five years to programs that provide teenagers with abstinence-only education.
The abstinence-only effort stands as an effective counter to the Democratic-backed Real Education for Healthy Youth Act. Introduced the same day as the Abstinence Education Reallocation Act, the bill seeks to "expand comprehensive sex education programs in schools and ensure that federal funds are spent on effective, age-appropriate, medically accurate programs." The legislation would also set down guidelines calling for sexual health programs that receive federal funding to feature LGBT-inclusive language on a variety of issues, reject gender stereotypes and provide accurate information about HIV.
Source: S.13 / H.R.718 13-H0718 on Feb 15, 2013
A-PLUS lets states escape No Child Left Behind.
Noem voted YEA A-PLUS Amendment To Student Success Act
Heritage Action Summary: An amendment offered by Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC) and Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) to the Student Success Act (H.R. 5). The amendment, known as A-PLUS (Academic Partnerships Lead Us to Success), would give the states the ability to consolidate their federal education funds and use them for any lawful education purpose they deem beneficial.
Heritage Foundation recommendation to vote YES: (7/8/2015): A-PLUS lets states escape No Child Left Behind's prescriptive programmatic requirements. At its core, A-PLUS delivers on the promise of "restoring state and local control over the 10% of education funding financed by the federal government," moving dollars out of the hands of federal bureaucrats and political appointees and into the hands of those closer to the students. Now is the time for Congress to restore federalism in education, empower parents and students instead of bureaucrats and unions, and remove archaic obstacles that have
prevented true opportunity for all.
US News and World Report recommendation to vote NO: (4/7/2015): A-PLUS [is intended as] a no-strings-attached block grant. There isn't all that much the federal government can do well in education, but it's because of federally-required transparency that charter schools and voucher schools can demonstrate that they work. For example, New York City's Success Academy scores in the top 1% of all the state's public schools in math and in the top 3% in English. When Success Academy came under fire from teachers' union-backed Mayor Bill de Blasio, it was able to fight back with numbers to prove it. If a strong-union state were to receive a no-strings-attached block grant, transparency would be the first thing to go. A no-strings-attached block grant is an overreaction to federal overreach.
Legislative outcome: Failed House 195 to 235 (no Senate vote)
Source: Congressional vote 15-H0005 on Jul 8, 2015
Vouchers break link of low-income and low-quality schools.
Noem voted YEA SOAR Act
Heritage Action Summary: The House will vote to reauthorize the Scholarships for Opportunity and Results (SOAR) Act (H.R. 10). The bill would continue funding through Fiscal Year 2021 and allow eligible students in Washington, D.C. to enroll in a participating private school.Analysis by Heritage Action:
ACLU recommendation to vote NO: (Letter to U.S.House, 3/29/2011): The ACLU urges Congress to oppose the SOAR Act, legislation to restart and expand Washington DC's failed private and religious school voucher pilot program. Originally started as a five-year pilot program in 2004, the DC voucher program is the nation's first and only federally-funded private and religious school voucher program. Under the federal voucher pilot program, funds were provided to schools even though they infuse their curricular materials with specific religious content and even though they are not covered by many of the nation's civil rights statutes that
would otherwise protect students against discrimination. Additionally, each of the congressionally-mandated studies to explore the pilot program concluded that the voucher program had no significant effect on the academic achievement.
Cato Institute recommendation to vote YES: (4/28/2016): The Obama administration has repeatedly worked to undermine or eliminate the DC school choice program, even though it has the support of local Democratic politicians such as the DC Mayor and a majority of the DC City Council. Low-income students shouldn't be condemned to low-quality schools just because their parents cannot afford a home in a wealthy neighborhood. The DC program was an important step toward breaking the link between home prices and school quality.
Legislative outcome: Passed by the House 240-191-3; never came to a vote in the Senate.
Source: Congressional vote 15-H0010 on Oct 21, 2015
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