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Amid criticism, Texas fails to OK new textbooks

AUSTIN, Texas >> Amid charges of bias from the right and left, the Texas Board of Education has failed to grant preliminary approval for any of the around 100 new history and social studies textbooks up for use in classrooms statewide.

The Republican-controlled board tried Tuesday night to pass all but two of the proposed books. But that effort failed 5-4, including four abstentions. One member was absent.

A final, potentially tense vote will now come Friday, with the board no closer to settling on books for Texas’ 5 million-plus public school students.

Some academics and activists have for months worried that many of the books exaggerate the influence of Moses and other biblical figures on American democracy.

Conservative groups, meanwhile, said many ignore connections between radical Islam and modern terrorism.

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