Just one quote from the guide here. It says this about CRT Proponents:
They are not trying to win an academic debate, they are attempting to socially replace you.
As such, almost any action stemming from CRT activists is designed to shut you up, diminish your standing in the community, undercut your authority to speak on an issue, alienate you from whichever group you are a part of so that others ignore you, pretend like there really isn’t any problem at all, or tear down your reputation so people don’t listen to you. Anything that they can do to win they will do.
Until a few years ago I had never actually read a legislative bill. Like most people, I took the media’s word for what bills, especially education related ones, were about and the potential impact. At some point I started reading select bills and even analyzing some.
Recently, there has been a lot of talk about CRT legislation in a number of states. The media accounts and what people were saying on both sides of the issue aroused my curiosity. As a result, I read bills from a number of states including ones from Arizona, Iowa, Oklahoma, Idaho, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Texas. I found it interesting that bills for those six states included some identical wording. That got me curious as to where that wording came from. I found it in the Presidential Executive Order 13950 of September 22, 2020 titled Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping. It is interesting to note Critical Race Theory is never mentioned in the Executive Order and is not mentioned in most state legislative bills.
The following are found in the Executive Order. With the exception of Idaho, most of the other six states included most, if not all, of these items in their legislation as things not to be taught.
One race or sex is inherently superior to another race or sex;
The state or the United States is fundamentally racist or sexist;
An individual, by virtue of his or her race or sex, is inherently racist, sexist, or oppressive, whether consciously or unconsciously;
An individual should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment solely or partly because of his or her race or sex;
An individual’s moral character is necessarily determined by his or her race or sex;
An individual, by virtue of his or her race or sex, bears responsibility for actions committed in the past by other members of the same race or sex;
Any individual should feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any other form of psychological distress on account of his or her race or sex;
Meritocracy or traits such as a hard work ethic are racist or sexist, or were created by a particular race to oppress another race; or
The term “divisive concept” includes any other form of race or sex stereotyping or any other form of race or sex scapegoating;
Members of one race or sex cannot and should not attempt to treat others without respect to race or sex.
Are these things people want taught to students across the country? I would like to think not. It makes me wonder if people who are against these legislative bills have actually read them or if they are simply reacting to the media hype.
Unlike people who are complaining about this, I fail to see how this prevents or bans the teaching of history. Does this ban or prevent teaching about the Civil War and Reconstruction, slavery, the civil rights movement, any aspect of American history, the Holocaust, or the contributions to our country of any and all people? For those teachers complaining about this, it makes me wonder what it is they want to teach students. Or do they want to indoctrinate them?
Besides this issue itself being divisive, what are other potential impacts? Will this lead to each school having a diversity, equity, and inclusive (DEI) coach? Rather than DEI, I prefer diversity, inclusive, and equity (DIE). Schools have instructional or curriculum coaches (often viewed as police), so why not DEI coaches. Has the stage not been set? The United Nations had a world campaign promoting diversity and inclusion. Universities and colleges have Vice Presidents or cabinet level position related to DEI. Most school districts have district level positions dedicated to DEI. Is the next logical step to have a DEI coach in each school?
Is CRT related legislation even necessary? Will such legislation just put another layer of rules and regs on top of ones already on the books but likely ignored and not enforced or selectively or inconsistently enforced? Isn’t the US Constitution and the Civil Rights Act already enough? In all the CRT kerfuffle, I have heard no mention of standards/codes that give guidance to teacher professionalism and ethics. Most, if not all, states have standards of professional practice or teacher code of ethics in place. Are those standards/codes being used? Or ignored in the kerfuffle? Could they be used? Violation of such standards/codes in most states is grounds for the suspension or revocation of teacher certification. If parents find their child’s teacher violates such standards/codes, maybe they need to see if the state will address it.
In fulfillment of the obligation to the student, the educator—
Shall not unreasonably restrain the student from independent action in the pursuit of learning. Shall not unreasonably deny the student’s access to varying points of view. Shall not deliberately suppress or distort subject matter relevant to the student’s progress. Shall make reasonable effort to protect the student from conditions harmful to learning or to health and safety. Shall not intentionally expose the student to embarrassment or disparagement. Shall not on the basis of race, color, creed, sex, national origin, marital status, political or religious beliefs, family, social or cultural background, or sexual orientation, unfairly Exclude any student from participation in any program Deny benefits to any student Grant any advantage to any student Shall not use professional relationships with students for private advantage. Shall not disclose information about students obtained in the course of professional service unless disclosure serves a compelling professional purpose or is required by law.
Most states have similar codes or standards. As an example, Tennessee’s Teacher Code of Ethics includes the following:
Abide by all applicable federal and state laws; Not unreasonably restrain the student from independent action in the pursuit of learning; Provide the student with professional education services in a nondiscriminatory manner and in consonance with accepted best practices known to the educator; Respect the constitutional rights of the student; Not unreasonably deny the student access to varying points of view; Not deliberately suppress or distort subject matter relevant to the student’s progress; Make reasonable effort to protect the student from conditions harmful to learning or to health and safety; Make reasonable effort to protect the emotional well-being of the student; Not intentionally expose the student to embarrassment or disparagement; Not on the basis of race; color; creed’ disability’ sex’ national origin’ marital status’ political or religious beliefs’ family, social, or cultural background’ or sexual orientation, unfairly: Exclude the student from participation in any program; Deny benefits to the student; or Grant any advantage to the student;
Parents may want to become familiar with the standards of professional practice or teacher code of ethics for their respective state.
For those interested in tracking legislative bills related to CRT, here are some web pages you may want to visit. I find the first two to be the most valuable.
I’m back. For nearly a year now, I have taken a break from posting here on The Underground Parent. That doesn’t mean I haven’t been paying attention to issues impacting the education of students all across the country. The pandemic has had, and will continue to have, a major impact on our education system and the education of our students. About a year ago, I started seeing and reading articles that raised my concern and had me start following issues related to diversity, equity, inclusiveness, and Critical Race Theory (CRT) permeating our education system. I have read legislative bills from several states related to CRT (even though the bills may not mention CRT). Recently, I watched the two videos included in this post. I wanted to share these videos as a start to presenting information and raising questions about CRT and all the commotion it is stirring up.
This video is from America, Can We Talk? Debbie Georgatos starts off talking about what Critical Race Theory (CRT) is and then two parents talk about what they have learned about CRT and how it ties into with Social Emotional Learning (SEL). The video is about 50 minutes long and well worth the watch.
This is a video of the live stream presentations put on by Moms for Liberty in Williamson County, Tennessee on May 19, 2021. The five excellent presenters It features are Robby Starbuck, Dr. Wenyuan Wu, a Mother of a 2nd Grade Student, Dr. Beth Meyers, and Dr. Gary Thompson. The complete video is about 3 hours long so you may want to watch it in segments rather than all in one sitting. The presentation by the Mother of a 2nd Grade Student is very emotional—you may want to have tissues at hand.
Now, I realize I have not actually answered the question, What the Heck is Critical Race Theory (CRT)? If you have watched these two videos you likely have formed your sense of what CRT is as it may appear in our school classrooms as well as other places.
This is the first post of what I hope will be a series related to CRT. The series will likely be disorganized since there is so much to address and it is hard to know where to begin. Information and issues may be addressed that may include CRT related legislation, whether legislation is really needed, possible impact of legislation, teacher codes of ethics, and activism.
“The issue of balance between procedural fluency and conceptual understanding in mathematics has served as a dividing line in education. Some believe that understanding of a procedure or algorithm must precede the procedure/algorithm itself—and if it doesn’t precede it, it should come about quickly. Failure to do this results in students who some call “math zombies”. Others believe that procedural fluency and conceptual understanding is an iterative process where one feeds the other. This talk explores what understanding is and what it isn’t, as well as how misunderstandings about understanding affect students.”
Also provided is the following information about Barry:
“Barry Garelick majored in mathematics at the University of Michigan. After working in the environmental field, he retired and embarked on a second career of teaching. He teaches 7th and 8th grade math at a small K-8 Catholic School in California. He has written articles about math education which have appeared in The Atlantic, Education Next and the Notices of the American Mathematical Society.”
This is a guest post by Ted Nutting. I’m a retired Seattle mathematics teacher. I’m alarmed by the proposals to address racial bias in our schools by doubling down on “inquiry-based learning” and by doing away with standardized tests. These … Continue reading →
Is our education system exhibiting signs of serious mission creep? At what point has the mission shifted from providing a knowledge-based academic education to conducting wellbeing checks and collecting a wide range of data? The Tennessee Department of Education appears … Continue reading →
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 10, 2019 For Information: Jon Loevy, Loevy & Loevy Attorneys at Law, 312.243.5900, firstname.lastname@example.org Scott Drury, Loevy & Loevy Attorneys at Law, 312.243.5900, email@example.com Andy Thayer, Loevy & Loevy Attorneys at Law, 773.209.1187, firstname.lastname@example.org Student Testing … Continue reading →
In this post, I am going to attempt to address a number of issues related to the situation in Wake County where the school district adopted the Mathematics Vision Project (MVP). The three main issues I hope to address have … Continue reading →
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Speakers are available to present on education reform issues. Topics that may be addressed are not limited to by may include the Common Core State Standards, Data Collection and Student Privacy, Opting Out of Assessments, and Homeschooling.