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Political Rewind: Education is set to be a headline issue in 2022. Here’s why

Credit: Sam Bermas-Dawes, GPB News

Wednesday on Political Rewind: Education has re-emerged as a top issue in state and national politics. 

In Georgia, Democrats said they feel blindsided by a proposal that would — among other things — reshape school boards across the state.

Banning so-called "critical race theory" has also become a primary issue for some Republican lawmakers. However, Georgia Budget and Policy Institute senior analyst Dr. Stephen Owens pointed out that it is not taught in Georgia schools. 

"When I talked to teacher and leader groups, they're very concerned about the lack of substitute teachers, school bus drivers," he said. "And those are things that can be addressed with state action, versus trying to ban CRT, (which) is like trying to ban Siberian tigers in public schools. It's just — it's not a concern that leaders may actually deal with."

Republican state Sen. Clint Dixon said he is interested in legislation to make school board elections nonpartisan. Lt. Gov. Geoff Duncan named Dixon to a study committee to look at the issue.

Plus, a fight over "banning books" in classrooms is brewing among lawmakers.

A trio of Republican state lawmakers said they plan on introducing legislation in the 2022 session banning "obscene materials."  But, what exactly falls under the definition of obscene?


Nicole Carr – Reporter, ProPublica

Dr. Stephen Owens – Senior policy analyst, Georgia Budget and Policy Institute

Sen. Sonya Halpern – Democratic state senator, District 39

Rep. Dave Belton – Republican state representative, District 112

Greg Bluestein – Politics reporter, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Copyright 2021 Georgia Public Broadcasting

Bill Nigut has been a program host and producer at Georgia Public Broadcasting since November, 2013. He currently hosts “Two Way Street,” a show that features long-form conversations with authors, artists, chefs, scientists and other creative people who have fascinating stories to tell. He is host and producer of “Political Rewind,” a twice-weekly political roundtable show featuring some of Georgia’s best-informed insiders weighing in on the big state and national political stories.
Sam joined the Political Rewind team in 2019. He graduated American University in 2015 with a degree in journalism and spent time in North Carolina as a reporter at WCHL in Chapel Hill.
Natalie Mendenhall
Sarah Kallis