A history of the Kanawha County textbook controversy, April 1974--April 1975
Candor, Catherine Ann
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From April 1974 to April 1975 the major actions, reactions and occurrences in Kanawha County are reported using various sources to document positions taken by individuals, groups and organizations during this period. Organized chronologically, the study traces the evolution of the textbook protest and continues through the abatement of most protest activities by April of 1975. Five factors, mostly outside the control of the educational establishment that contributed to and sustained the conflict are analyzed. These include the state law regarding the seating of school board members, the role of organized labor, the lack of adequate law enforcement, the intervention of outside groups and the role of the media. The following conclusions and implications emerge from the study. Students, teachers and administrators in Kanawha County were most deeply affected by the textbook controversy with general agreement that the effects of the protest will be felt for years to come. In the future, public schools, involving everyone directly or indirectly, will not escape as arenas of conflict and controversy. As a result of the social activism movement of the 1960 l s and 1970's and public concern over the performance and operation of the schools, educational systems across the country can expect increasing assaults on their legitimacy, although controversy may be inevitable, there are positive actions which may be taken by school boards and educational administrators to reduce or avoid the disruptiveness of a protest such as the one in Kanawha County. By establishing a broad base of community support and involvement, educators may be able to avoid conflict rather than having to react to it.
- Doctoral Dissertations