HALL MONITOR: “YES” on DEI Accountability and Transparency in Louisiana Schools (HB 904)

Name: Louisiana House Bill 904

Summary: Requires public K-12 schools and state universities to report the purpose, number of personnel, and expected expenditures on any diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives within the school.

Status: The Louisiana House Committee on Education will consider House Bill 904 during a hearing on Tuesday, April 30, 2024.

Sponsors: Representative Emily Chenevert

Bill Breakdown: 

HB 904 would require transparency from schools regarding programs focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion. It would require schools to annually report their spending on such programs to the state Department of Education.

The bill defines covered DEI programs as any program, lesson, activity, or event that classifies individuals “on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, culture, gender identity, or sexual orientation, or promotes differential or preferential treatment on the basis of such classification.” It requires schools to report the purpose and a description of a program, the number of staff dedicated to the program, the amount of funding allotted to the program, and then amount of funding that is state-funded.

Why does PDE Action support this bill? 

Past diversity and inclusion efforts ensured participants treat each other with respect and dignity in the workplace. Unfortunately, such conversations have been hijacked. Now, participants—including students and staff at public universities and K-12 schools—are taught to view and judge one another by their race or sex. The public deserves to know what types of DEI initiatives schools are promoting to teachers and students. House Bill 904 would ensure that all schools in Louisiana turn over key data on their DEI initiatives and programs to the Department of Education. This would include the number of faculty dedicated to promoting DEI and the amount of taxpayer funding spent on DEI initiatives.

The narrative of most DEI trainings today splits people into groups of “oppressors” or “oppressed” based on their race, sex, sexual orientation, or “gender identity.” Parents have the right to know if their children are being taught these divisive ideologies, and taxpayers have a right to know if their tax dollars are being used to implement such programs.