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Photo: Robert Daemmrich Photography Inc/Corbis via Getty Images

The Texas State Board of Education has preliminarily approved to remove figures like Hilary Clinton and Helen Keller from mandatory school curriculums, the Dallas Morning News reports.

The big picture: The work groups that made the recommendation believe students are being required to learn too many historical dates and names "instead of real learning," per DMN. The current Texas curriculum requires third-graders to learn around 36 historical figures, fourth-graders learn around 69, and eighth-graders have to learn about 50.

How it happened: The work group graded historical figures by a rubric, ranking who was "essential" to learn. The items deleted from the curriculum can still be talked about and taught in the classroom, but they are no longer required.

  • The questions the group had to answer, per DMN, included: "Did the person trigger a watershed change"; "Will their impact stand the test of time"; "Was the person from an underrepresented group?"
  • The group also voted on other phrases, events and figures to either have deleted or reinserted into the required state curriculum.

What's next: The matter can still be overturned as a final vote takes place in November.

Go deeper

Biden explains justification for Syria strike in letter to Congress

Photo: Chris Kleponis/CNP/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden told congressional leadership in a letter Saturday that this week's airstrike against facilities in Syria linked to Iranian-backed militia groups was consistent with the U.S. right to self-defense.

Why it matters: Some Democrats, including Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.), have criticized the Biden administration for the strike and demanded a briefing.

9 hours ago - Health

FDA authorizes Johnson & Johnson's one-shot COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use

Photo: Illustration by Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration on Saturday issued an emergency use authorization for Johnson & Johnson's one-shot coronavirus vaccine.

Why it matters: The authorization of a third coronavirus vaccine in the U.S. will help speed up the vaccine rollout across the country, especially since the J&J shot only requires one dose as opposed to Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech's two-shot vaccines.

Updated 9 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios