OKLAHOMA CITY – State Rep. Sheila Dills, R-Tulsa, today filed legislation that would require each Oklahoma public school to observe a one-minute moment of silence to observe Sept. 11 and April 19 each year.
Sept. 11, 2001, was the date of terrorist attacks against the World Trade Center buildings in New York City as well as the Pentagon in Arlington, VA. Three planes flew into the buildings. A fourth plane was downed near Shanksville, PA, after a group of civilians thwarted terrorist plans to fly the plane into the nation’s Capitol in Washington, D.C. The attacks killed almost 3,000 people and injured thousands more.
April 19 is the anniversary of the Oklahoma City Bombing that killed 168 people in 1995. Prior to Sept. 11, the event was one of the worst domestic terrorist attacks in the nation.
“Students of all ages in our public schools need to be made aware of the attacks that happened against our citizenry on these dates,” Dills said. “Only through education and awareness can we hope to prevent such senseless acts of terrorism in the future.”
Dills said currently, there are inconsistencies of how these anniversaries are observed in schools throughout the state. Some schools recognize these events; others do not. Her bill would require state boards of education to ensure that each school in the district observe a one-minute moment of silence each year in observance of these dates.
If the anniversary for either event occurs on a day when school is not in session, the one-minute moment of silence would be observed when school is in session on the day nearest the anniversary.
The state boards of education also shall adopt a program to be presented to students in grades 1 through 12 that incorporates age-appropriate information about each event and the role these acts played in the history of our nation.
The full text of House Bill 2970 will be available here.