Tennessee Lawmakers Give Even More Money To Testing Company That Champions “Woke” Ideology

Jun 20, 2023 | Political News

Tennessee lawmakers voted to give approximately $40 million more to a testing company whose ideology directly contradicts the state’s legislative efforts to ban Critical Race Theory (CRT) and Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) programs.

Based in Britain, Pearson – who administers Tennessee’s standardized testing of K-12 students – is the largest educational publisher in the world. According to Heritage Foundation scholar Jonathan Butcher, the company’s editorial guidelines make it clear that Pearson wants to make “radical ideas, such as “antiracism,” “colorism,” “colonial discourse,” “genderism,” and “intersectionality,” part of everything it does.”

Tennessee lawmakers have been actively fighting against this kind of “woke” ideology being taught in K-12 public schools but last month the Legislature’s Joint Fiscal Review Committee voted to extend Pearson’s contract to administer TNReady for an additional year, increasing the total to be paid to them from $93 million to $132 million. As part of the increase, Pearson will make changes that align with paper-based tests as well as improve data they provide for instructional purposes.