John Huppenthal, an outgoing Republican school superintendent with a questionably racist past, used his last day in the office to issue possible funding sanctions on a school because it taught a class on Hip-Hop. In a letter issued this past Friday, Huppenthal is urging the state to enforce withholding of financial support to the school.
Huppenthal’s letter addressed to Tuscson Unified School District superintendent H.T. Sanchez took direct aim at the district’s decision to teach “culturally relevant” classes which is out of step with a state law. Cholla Magnet High School is mentioned in Huppenthal’s correspondence, which taught a history class, “Culturally Relevant Mexican American Perspective,” and used lyrics from the rap-rock group, Rage Against The Machine.
An English class at Cholla Magnet High, “Culturally Relevant African American Perspective,” was said to have included from KRS-One’s “An Introduction to Hip-Hop” eassy.
More from the Arizona Daily Star:
John Huppenthal, who lost in the election, said in a news release Friday that the state can decide to withhold funding from Tucson Unified School District for the courses.
“During my tenure as Superintendent, I have been closely monitoring the status of the Tucson Unified School District’s culturally relevant curricula to ensure that all TUSD students, regardless of their race or ethnic background, have access to a high quality education,” Huppenthal said in the release. “After a thorough review of materials from TUSD’s culturally relevant courses, I find that the district has failed to meet several provisions of the 2012 Settlement Agreement.”
The classes replaced TUSD’s now defunct Mexican American Studies courses, which were declared in violation of state law.
“I am deeply concerned by the fact that the noncompliance appears to extend beyond classes taught from the Mexican American perspective and now also includes classes taught from the African American perspective,” the release reads.
State Governer Jan Brewer, who once famously scolded President Barack Obama in his face, signed into law in 2010 a ban on race-related coursework. The idea was that these classes potentially promoted “resentment” towards other races.
Huppenthal was embroiled in controversy last year when he confessed to writing a series of racially iinsensitiveblog posts. Huppenthal tearfully apologized for his words,but it wasn’t enough to save him from losing his re-election bid in August.
[h/t Raw Story]
Photo: Arizona State Government/Office Of School Superintendent.