The Australian Upper House has voted to reject Critical Race Theory (CRT) from the national curriculum, as the newly proposed curriculum prioritizes teaching the culture, attitudes and history of Indigenous Australians in all subjects, including mathematics.
The motion, presented by One Nation’s Pauline Hanson, passed narrowly with a 30-28 votes. The Liberal, National and One Nation parties voted in favor, while Labor, Greens and Independent Senator Rex Patrick opposed the proposal.
The CRT, which has gained international fame from its growing presence in America, is an ideology rooted in the Marxist theory of class struggle, but with a particular focus on race. It teaches that societies like Australia are built on systems that are inherently racist.
draft syllabus It was severely criticized after all references to Australia’s democratic and Judeo-Christian heritage were erased.
Senator Hanson said CRT’s divisive teachings had no place in Australian classrooms and children deserve education, not education.
“Thanks to One Nation, a strong message has been sent to the government and is now on record to reject the critical race theory,” Hanson wrote On Facebook.
“Now the fight is on to make sure the government keeps its word and keeps our children’s schools free from this type of divisive, radical leftist ideology.”
Senator Mehreen Farooqui, an anti-racism spokeswoman for the Greens party, who herself voted against the proposal, called it “far-right hatred”.
“Critical race theory is basically the study of systemic racism. But it has become a bogeyman for the far-right — first in America, now here — in their anti-racism and fear-mongering delusions about racial justice,” Farooqui said in a statement.
“The government cannot claim to take far-right hatred seriously when they go after such nonsense.”
A national debate has recently erupted in the United States around the teaching of CRT, even as former President Donald Trump has urged lawmakers and parents against the “anti-American” doctrine.
“The important fact about this distorted theory is that it is the complete opposite of everything that ordinary Americans of any color would like to teach their children,” Trump wrote in an op-ed.
An earlier survey by the Institute of Public Affairs found that most Australians disapprove of CRT and identity politics in the classroom.
Australia’s draft curriculum Open for public feedback until 8 July.