Red Teachers and Educational Freedom

February 11, 1953

Report Outline
Communist Infiltration of Schools Systems
Action to Combat Subversion in Schools
Effect of Red Hunts on Freedom of Teaching

Communist Infiltration of Schools Systems

Congressional Attention to the menace of Communist infiltration of the American educational system has spurred responsible authorities in the states to increased effort to eliminate such subversive influences as may remain in the schools. Leaders in education, while fully aware of the dangers from Communist sources, are no less concerned over dangers raised by unthinking Red hunts in the schools. Many of them hold that attacks on the schools have already reached such extremes as to defame the teaching profession, imperil teachers' freedom of utterance and inquiry, and lower the quality of schooling afforded American youth.

President Eisenhower, as head of Columbia University, defended the patriotism of American teachers and joined other educators in reasserting traditional principles of academic freedom. As a member of the Educational Policies Commission, he had a hand in drafting a 1949 statement by the commission which opposed employment of Communists as teachers, but at the same time condemned state laws prescribing special teacher loyalty oaths, and called on the schools to resist pressures that would lead to impairment of civil rights.

Continuing Investigation of Communism in Schools

The Internal Security subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee, now headed by Sen. Jenner (R., Ind.), resumed on Feb. 10 the investigation of subversive influences in the educational process initiated last year by the McCarran (D., Nev.) subcommittee. Jenner said the inquiry would be “national in scope” and would seek to determine whether there is “organized subversion” in the schools. The House Un-American Activities Committee is scheduled shortly to open a similar investigation. Chairman Velde (R., Ill.) said its first attention would be given to individual teachers suspected of disloyalty. First witnesses at the resumed Senate hearings declined to answer questions on grounds of possible self-incrimination.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Communism and Socialism
Aug. 02, 2011  Communism Today
Mar. 04, 1988  Communist Reformers Look West
Dec. 28, 1984  Communist Economies
Sep. 21, 1984  Southern European Socialism
Feb. 09, 1979  Communist Indochina and the Big Powers
Apr. 23, 1976  Western European Communism
May 28, 1969  World Communist Summit
Nov. 20, 1968  Intellectuals in Communist Countries
Aug. 28, 1968  Scandinavia and Socialism
Oct. 18, 1967  Soviet Communism After Fifty Years
Sep. 21, 1966  Soviet Economy: Incentives Under Communism
Sep. 15, 1965  Thailand: New Red Target
Dec. 18, 1963  Communist Schisms
Mar. 13, 1963  Venezuela: Target for Reds
Apr. 25, 1962  Teaching About Communism
Dec. 01, 1960  Farming and Food in Communist Lands
Apr. 27, 1960  Communist Party, U.S.A.
Nov. 07, 1956  Reds and Redefection
Apr. 11, 1956  Communists and Popular Fronts
Dec. 07, 1955  Religion Behind the Iron Curtain
Nov. 12, 1954  Communist Controls
Feb. 11, 1953  Red Teachers and Educational Freedom
Apr. 04, 1950  Loyalty and Security
Aug. 19, 1949  Church and Communism
Jul. 22, 1949  Reds in Trade Unions
Jul. 05, 1949  Academic Freedom
Feb. 11, 1948  Control of Communism in the United States
Feb. 05, 1947  Investigations of Un-Americanism
Nov. 13, 1946  Communism in America
Mar. 28, 1935  Anti-Radical Agitation
Oct. 19, 1932  The Socialist Vote in 1932
Aug. 08, 1931  National Economic Councils Abroad
Education Policy
U.S. at War: Cold War