Policies and Regulations NEPN Code: IMB

Teaching about Controversial/Sensitive Issues

Training for effective citizenship is accepted as one of the major goals of public schools. District instructional programs developed to achieve this purpose properly place great emphasis upon teaching about the country’s heritage, the rights and privileges citizens enjoy, and citizenship responsibilities that must be assumed to maintain the American way of life.

In training for effective citizenship, it is necessary for students to study issues that are controversial. In considering such issues, it shall be the purpose of the schools to recognize the student’s right:

  • to study any controversial issue which has political, economic, or social significance and concerning which (at the appropriate level) the student should begin to form an opinion.
  • to have access to relevant information, including the materials that circulate freely in the community.
  • to study under competent instructors in an objective atmosphere free from bias and prejudice. The instructor will provide resources, materials, or sources of information on as many aspects of the issue as he/she can in order that all students may reach individual conclusions with regard to the particular issue.
  • to form and express personal opinions on controversial issues without jeopardizing the relationship between the student and his/her teacher.
  • to recognize that reasonable compromise is often an important facet in decision making in our society.
  • to respect minority opinions.
  • to be graded upon the quality of the student’s work in developing and articulating an opinion, not based upon the student’s opinions on the issue(s).


Policy   Board Action (formerly 6144)
Adopted: 05-28-68    
Amended: 06-14-76    
Amended: 09-24-01 29954  
Amended: 02-25-08 34975  
Reviewed: 04-09-12 36336  
Reviewed: 02-13-17 37688