Sunday, April 02, 2017

California's Teachers Can Now Be Communists

I was reading a post over at Joanne's about "diversity oaths" required of professors at several universities, and California's prohibition against Communist K-12 teachers sprang to mind.  I went immediately to the California Legislative Information Page to look up the section but couldn't find it by searching for "communist" or "communism".  So I went to the Table of Contents for Education Code and found the section about dismissing teachers--specifically Section 44932.

The prohibition against Communism isn't there.

OK, I know it used to be there, or at least somewhere.  Turns out, I blogged about Section 44932 back in 2006--and sure enough, the prohibition was there in 2006:
 I found a few sections of California Education Code that address this topic:

Section 44932. (a) No permanent employee shall be dismissed except for one or more of the following causes:
(10) Knowing membership by the employee in the Communist Party.

Section 44939. Upon the filing of written charges, duly signed and verified by the person filing them with the governing board of a school district, or upon a written statement of charges formulated by the governing board, charging a permanent employee of the district with ...knowing membership in the Communist Party...the governing board may, if it deems such action necessary, immediately suspend the employee from his duties....
These sections have now been amended in such a way that a teacher can be a communist but cannot violate Section 51530, which states that teachers cannot "advocate or teach communism with the intent to indoctrinate or to inculcate in the mind of any pupil a preference for communism."  These changes appear to be over a year old:

 (Amended by Stats. 2015, Ch. 303, Sec. 86. Effective January 1, 2016.)
I wrote back in 2008 that the change may be coming; apparently, it came.  Is the law inconsistent, in that Section 1028 of the Government Code still states:
ARTICLE 2. Disqualifications for Office or Employment [1020 - 1043]
  ( Article 2 enacted by Stats. 1943, Ch. 134. )

It shall be sufficient cause for the dismissal of any public employee when such public employee advocates or is knowingly a member of the Communist Party or of an organization which during the time of his membership he knows advocates overthrow of the Government of the United States or of any state by force or violence.

Oddly enough, Ed Code still prohibits classified employees, both in K-12 and community colleges, from being members of the Communist Party. Section 38136 still forbids schools from allowing the Communist Party from using their facilities.



Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to find out who pursued and was able to make the change. Then bring it up in the next election...

Darren said...

It wouldn't be a negative here in California.

Ellen K said...

I'm sure soon the code will be replaced with one where no teacher can be a self-proclaimed conservative.