The alphabet soup poisoning our schools


On Nov. 9, the Douglas County school board voted to do nothing about Critical Race Theory, denying it is in our schools.

Make no mistake. The theory is live and well and politicizing the classrooms, teacher training, teacher development program, student assessment tools, and libraries of Douglas County’s schools. The school board is either woefully ignorant of what the term “CRT” has come to mean, or it knows and doesn’t want to do anything about it. I suspect it is the latter.

The theory is not merely an “old law theory.” It has become an all-purpose progressive political philosophy built around racism parading as “anti-racism” combined with a concept called “social justice” that condemns capitalism, individualism, hard work, and competition.

But since CRT is a social construct, how could it be insinuated in education? The answer is “Social Emotional Learning” which the DCSB adopted a few years back. It calls for instruction to be devoted to “social and emotional” (read: how well do you fit with progressive ideology?) assessments and for “teaching” the morals and values the creators (read: progressive folks) judge to be the “right” ones.

Let’s break it down. Social Emotional Learning currently pushes “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.” These concepts, which permeate the K-12 educational landscape (and business and government landscapes, too), sell well because they sound good, yet lurking beneath the veneer of supposed desirable outcomes one discovers CRT.

One might think “diversity” would mean treating differences with tolerance. Wrong. SEL/CRT “Diversity” means throwing out color-blindness and noting race as a key factor. It re-interprets history around the idea that America has been a bad actor in the world from its inception.

“Equity” used to mean “the quality of being fair and impartial.” SEL/CRT “Equity” mandates adjustments and reparations to correct imbalances and demands equal results not equal opportunities. Wealth re-distribution and confiscation is essential.

SEL/CRT “Equity” eliminates meritocracy and erases long-standing and proven standards and practices by labeling them “white supremacy.” Under SEL/CRT “Equity” the grading scale is lowered or eliminated altogether, and gifted and talented programs are shut down. Even math is labeled “racist” and described as aiding the “oppressor” (white people) in putting down the “oppressed” (Black people).

Lastly, “Inclusion,” which formerly meant that everyone was to be welcomed and treated kindly now means to be deemed socially acceptable (and thus gain teacher approval and acceptable grades) students must embrace and accept the morals and values promoted by DEI. Abortion is not killing a baby, there are many more than two genders, capitalism is exploitation — this is a short list of stances foisted on students as the “correct” way of thinking under SEL/CRT “Inclusion.”

It also includes the notion that subjective experience is of equal importance in gaining knowledge and imparting knowledge as the process of studying and learning established facts. Social Emotional Learning supports this and wouldn’t exist without it. Everyone has their own valid “truth.”

At Douglas High, mandated surveys and other tools that provide “accountability” so it can get government funding probe into students’ sexual identities, sexual habits, family political and religious beliefs, behavioral issues, and much more. Virtually unknown entities then assess if the student has sufficient grit, smarts, and social “health” to be considered, in the opinion of the analysts, a good prospect for this or that college, career, or vocation.

Yes, our school district would risk losing substantial funding if it didn’t do what the Nevada Department of Education dictates, and NDE currently dictates that schools adopt SEL.

“We must sacrifice the children to keep afloat,” the Douglas County School Board reasons. Of course, that’s not what it says aloud. It says, “CRT doesn’t exist in our schools,” but that lie is a betrayal of the students and a betrayal of Douglas County and the America it stands for.

As long as the standards and curriculum in Douglas County are influenced by SEL and DEI, CRT will be stalking our students. At the least, our School Board must condemn CRT, eliminate CRT where it has been already positively identified (in school libraries, student surveys, and teacher training), and make clear that the CRT brand of DEI, anti-racism, and social justice will not be tolerated in our schools.

Virginia Starrett is a Foohill resident and director Protect Nevada Children


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