Oklahoma SB 1470 and its Human Rights Implications

Oklahoma SB 1470 and its Human Rights Implications



Ryley Goles, Grace K. Hughes, Jacob E. Lunsford, Naumann


Presentation: 3:50 p.m.-4:20 p.m., Kennedy Union 312

This project reflects research conducted as part of a course project designed to give students experience in the research process.

Course: HRS 200



Oklahoma’s Senate Bill 1470, titled the “Students’ Religious Belief Protection Act,” disproportionately silences students and employees in the Oklahoma public school system that are part of a religious minority. The bill states that Oklahoma public school employees cannot promote or teach ideas that contradict students’ religious beliefs. In addition, employees are subject to fines and/or termination for violating this bill. This legislation, if passed, would directly violate the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the First Amendment by suppressing freedom of thought and speech. This bill comes as one of a number of bills across the country that aim to control what is taught in schools. This piece of legislation holds the potential to change what is taught in schools and how certain controversial topics may be portrayed – or even silenced. This bill could create a snowball effect that leads to more legislation further limiting educators and suppressing instruction on certain topics. Ultimately, it could result in states controlling what and how students learn about certain topics.

Publication Date


Project Designation

Course Project

Primary Advisor

Tereza M. Szeghi

Primary Advisor's Department



Stander Symposium project, College of Arts and Sciences

United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Reduced Inequalities

Oklahoma SB 1470 and its Human Rights Implications