Maine latest state with "controversial issues" measure

02.01.2019

A bill in the Maine legislature would require a code of ethics for public school teachers — with a provision that could adversely affect science education. Maine's is the fifth measure of its type in 2019, joining South Dakota's House Concurrent Resolution 1002 and House Bill 1113, Virginia's House Joint Resolution 684, and Arizona's House Bill 2002.

Legislative Document 589 (House Paper 433), prefiled in the Maine House of Representatives, would, if enacted, require the state board of education to adopt a code of ethics to prevent public school teachers in the state from engaging in what it describes as "political or ideological indoctrination."

As Ars Technica (January 29, 2019) explained with reference to a spate of similar measures, "the bills would call for teachers not to advocate on any topics that have appeared in the platform of a state political party. ... Which is problematic, given that a large number of state party platforms specifically mention evolution and climate change."