State Watch

The states taking steps to ban critical race theory

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Critical race theory has come under intense scrutiny in 2021, with numerous states taking steps to ban it in public schools.

Opponents of the academic theory argue the curriculum can be divisive, while proponents say it shines a light on institutionalized racism and other systemic barriers to equality that disproportionately affect people of color.

Below are the 21 states that have either introduced legislation to ban critical race theory or banned it altogether. This list will be updated as necessary.


On May 27, the state Senate failed to pass SB 1532 when two Republicans voted against it. The measure could still come up for another vote.


Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) signed SB627 banning “divisive concepts” on May 3. The Senate passed the measure in a 20-6 vote, while the House voted 72 to 19 in favor.


Gov. Brad Little (R) signed into law House Bill 377 on April 28. The statute withholds funds from any public schools that teach critical race theory.


The state legislature sent House File 307 to the governor’s mansion on May 20. It is currently awaiting a signature from Gov. Kim Reynolds (R).


Rep. Joseph M. Fischer (R) on June 1 prefiled BR 60, a measure that would withhold $5,000 in funding per day for schools that teach that “one’s race inherently qualifies them as racist.” The legislation has yet to be introduced to the General Assembly.


Rep. Raymond E. Garofalo (R) introduced House Bill 564 on April 12. The bill aims to ban the teaching of “divisive concepts” related to race and sex in public schools. Garofalo “voluntarily defer[ed]” the bill on April 27. 


On Feb. 22, Rep. Meldon Carmichael (R) introduced House bill 550, which would prohibit public school teachers from “engaging in political ideological or religious advocacy in the classroom.” The bill was referred to the Committee on Education and Cultural Affairs on June 7.


Republicans on May 20 introduced Senate Bill 460, which would exclude race theory education from public curriculum. The bill specifically names the 1619 Project and describes it as “anti-American.” The measure has been referred to the Committee on Education and Career Readiness.


On Jan. 28, Rep. Brian Sietz (R) introduced House Bill 952, which takes aim at the 1619 Project. The measure has been referred to a legislative oversight committee.

New Hampshire

Reps. Jason Osborne (R), Glenn Cordelli (R) and Keith Ammon (R) introduced a version of race theory legislation on Jan. 12. House Bill 544 would ban race theory in trainings and educational curriculum. The measure was adopted as an amendment to the state budget that has yet to be signed into law.

North Carolina

On March 23, Rep. Jason Saine (R) introduced House Bill 324, a measure that its author says would ensure “dignity” and “nondiscrimination” in schools. The House passed the bill, which has since been referred to the Committee on Rules and Operations of the Senate.


On May 25, more than two dozen Republican state representatives introduced HB322. The bill would ban the discussion of critical race theory in public schools.


On May 7, Gov. Kevin Stitt (R) signed HB 1775. The legislation bans the requirement for students to “engage in certain training or counseling.”


Reps. Barb Gleim (R) and Russ Diamond (R) are among the sponsors of HB 1532, a measure that would restrict “racist and sexist concepts.” The bill was introduced to the House on March 3 and was referred to the Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs on April 22.

Rhode Island

Reps. Patricia Morgan (R), George Nardone (R) and Sherry Roberts (R) introduced H6070 on March 3. The bill would “prohibit the teaching of divisive concepts,” and is pending review from the House Education Committee.

South Carolina

Nineteen Republican representatives introduced H.4325 on May 4. The bill would ban “critical race theory.” It has been referred to the Committee on Education and Public Works.


Sen. Mike Bell and other Republican senators introduced SB0623 on Feb. 2. The bill prohibits schools from teaching that “one race or sex is inherently superior to another race or sex.” The state legislature passed the legislation, which was signed into law by Gov. Bill Lee (R) on May 25.


Rep. Steve Toth (R) introduced H.B. 3979 “Relating to the Social Studies Curriculum in Public Schools.” The bill was passed by the legislature and sent to Gov. Greg Abbott (R) on June 1. It is awaiting his signature.


Rep. Steve R. Christiansen (R) introduced H.R. 901 “House Resolution on Critical Race Theory in Public Education” on May 19. The bill is currently with the Lieutenant Governor’s office.

West Virginia

Sen. Michael T. Azinger (R) introduced Senate Bill 618 prohibiting the teaching of “divisive acts and critical race theory in West Virginia schools” on March 10. The bill was referred to the Committee on Education and the Committee on the Judiciary. A similar bill aiming to “prohibit ‘divisive concepts’ from schools,” House Bill 2595, was introduced by Rep. Riley Keaton on Feb. 18. It was referred to the Committee on Education and the Judiciary.


Rep. Chuck Wichgers (R) and Sen. Andre Jacque (R) announced legislation this month that would ban “race or sex stereotyping” in all schools including public and charter schools and colleges in the state.

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