The South Dakota Board of Education has eliminated early American history from the curriculum, effectively preventing students from learning about slavery, the American Revolution, and the Native Americans.

Standing behind the adage that “those who don’t learn history are doomed to repeat it,” college history professors are speaking out against the board’s decision to keep kids from learning early American history. “I don’t like it,” said professor Michael Mullin. “My name is actually on the college professor’s list that opposed them.”

Mullin and others say that preventing students from learning this about period of American history is not only a disservice to education, but will also leave them unprepared for university coursework.

“I think progress helps our students prepare for the 21st Century,” said Michael Amolins, Harrisburg School District Secondary Curriculum Director. “So rather than just having them memorize a list of historical events on a timeline, we’re trying to get them to use that information in context so that when they’re looking at current events they can make good and informed decisions as citizens and as voters.” 

South Dakota is a staunchly conservative state whose governors have been Republican since 1979. The decision to cut early American history from the school curriculum shows a blatant disregard for education in favor of Republican politics.

For more on this story, visit KSFY, “Early American history could be a thing of the past.”