Montana Becomes Latest State to Shoot Down Critical Race Theory in Classrooms


Montana’s attorney general issued an opinion on Thursday labeling critical race theory and some anti-racism programs taught in schools as discriminatory and said they violate federal and state law.

Republican Attorney General Austin Knudsen’s decision bans the activities — which are also used for employee training — in the state. It comes after Republican Superintendent of Public Instruction Elsie Arntzen requested earlier this month for Knudsen to weigh in on the issue.

The move makes Montana the latest of several Republican-controlled states to decry critical race theory.

Knudsen’s binding opinion states that certain activities that fall under the umbrella of critical race theory teaching violate the U.S. and state constitutions.

Such activities include grading students differently based on race; forcing people to admit “racial privilege”; assigning fault, blame or bias to a race; and offering training or assignments that force students or employees to support concepts such as racial privilege.

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Schools and government and public workplaces could lose state funding and could be liable for damages from lawsuits if they offer critical race theory training or activities, Knudsen’s office said in a statement.

“Committing racial discrimination in the name of ending racial discrimination is both illogical and illegal,” Knudsen said in a statement.

“Montana law does not tolerate schools, other government entities, or employers implementing CRT and antiracist programming in a way that treats individuals differently on the basis of race or that creates a racially hostile environment.”

The attorney general’s office encouraged students and parents who believe they experience illegal discrimination under critical race theory programming to sue their schools directly or file complaints with the U.S. Department of Education.

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