“After making national headlines for a new law on illegal immigrants, the Arizona Legislature passed a bill Thursday that would ban ethnic studies programs in the state that critics say currently advocate separatism and racial preferences…

“The new bill would make it illegal for a school district to teach any courses that promote the overthrow of the U.S. government, promote resentment of a particular race or class of people, are designed primarily for students of a particular ethnic group or ‘advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals.’…

“‘Traditionally, the American public school system has brought together students from different backgrounds and taught them to be Americans and to treat each other as individuals, and not on the basis of their ethnic backgrounds,’ [State Superintendent for Public Instruction Tom] Horne said. ‘This is consistent with the fundamental American value that we are all individuals, not exemplars of whatever ethnic groups we were born into. Ethnic studies programs teach the opposite, and are designed to promote ethnic chauvinism.'”

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“The Arizona Department of Education recently began telling school districts that teachers whose spoken English it deems to be heavily accented or ungrammatical must be removed from classes for students still learning English.

“State education officials say the move is intended to ensure that students with limited English have teachers who speak the language flawlessly. But some school principals and administrators say the department is imposing arbitrary fluency standards that could undermine students by thinning the ranks of experienced educators…

“‘This is just one more indication of the incredible anti-immigrant sentiment in the state,’ said Bruce Merrill, a professor emeritus at Arizona State University who conducts public-opinion research.”

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“Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is expected to announce Monday if he’ll run for Arizona governor.

“Several sources confirm to the ABC15 Investigators that Arpaio has already made a decision, and will likely run for the office.”