Commentary: Chehalis School District Passes Resolution Against Teaching Critical Race Theory Indoctrination 

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The elected board of the Chehalis School District has responded to the concerns of parents and passed a resolution banning the teaching of controversial Critical Race Theory in public school classrooms.

The new policy, passed June 15, provides that schools will not teach that some students are inherently good and others are inherently bad based on their outward appearance.  Further, district officials declared that political ideology has no place in public schools and that teachers will educate students, not tell them what to think or what opinions to hold.

The Chehalis district comprises eight public schools serving some 3,000 students.

Key provisions of the board’s resolution state:

  • “The central purpose and goal of the Chehalis School District is to build a sound educational foundation for each student, enabling them to become responsible citizens.”
  • “Providing each student this educational foundation is key toward equality of opportunity for every Chehalis student.  Our school district is not a political or partisan organization.  The district does not push any ideology.”
  • “The District fosters teaching and learning, K-12, that helps students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills which they can apply to life’s challenges.  These skills will enable them the freedom to chart the most productive course for their own life.”
  • “We will not teach Chehalis students that people, due to their race or background are inherently good or bad, guilty or innocent, more or less capable than others.”
  • “Equality of opportunity through an excellent education for every young person in the Chehalis School District, empowering them with the choice of college and/or career, is the central purpose and desired goal.”

School leaders in Chehalis, unlike officials in Seattle, Spokane, Bellevue, Highline and other districts, are rightly keeping their focus on academic standards and providing equal access to education excellence for all.

In communities where educating children is no longer the top mission, parents should be allowed access to alternatives, like those proposed in Rep. Vicki Kraft’s bill (HB 1215) to give a fully-funded $7,000 Education Savings Account (ESA) to every family that wants one.  Then every child could get a great public education, without the negative impacts caused by harmful race-based indoctrination.

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Liv Finne is the director of the Washington Policy Center’s Center for Education. She can be reached at lfinne@washingtonpolicy.org.  Learn more about the Washington Policy Center at https://www.washingtonpolicy.org/.

Comments

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Patty Howard

As a former teacher in the Chehalis school district, I am compelled to respond to this commentary. First and foremost, Critical Race Theory does not teach that "some students are inherently good and others are inherently bad based on their outward appearance." Critical Race Theory takes a critical look at racial justice and the roots of racism in the United States. CRT focuses on systemic and institutional changes and challenges that lead to racism and seeks to uncover the hidden dynamics that have brought us to where we are in this country. Unfortunately, some groups have co-opted the term and twisted it to serve their own agendas. Contrary to promoting racism, as the quote from the commentary suggests, CRT examines the role of race in our justice system and the complex interplay between race and gender or race and class that unfairly disadvantages minorities. It is not about promoting an ideology; however, those who are against CRT present it as such in order to gain support from those who simply believe what they hear or read rather than researching for themselves. I would strongly recommend that anyone who is concerned about Critical Race Theory research it using credible and unbiased sources. For those who are interested, the Washington Policy Center has a distinct bias and is not a reliable source of information.

Thursday, July 8
Jason Smith

Thank you for your comments Patty! Fortunately the author of this propaganda piece seems to be heavily misrepresenting the statement from the school district. Notably they failed to mention this:

“Further, it is acknowledged there is evidence of systematic wrong doing, intentional or unintentional where the United States has failed to live up to the ideals of the Nation’s founding. Understanding and learning from these failures is a necessary part of a quality education.”

Friday, July 9
partsgirl

Good for Chehalis. No school should teach CRT.

Friday, July 9
Amber

This is so unfortunate. Not only does this article grossly and inaccurately mis-represent what CRT is, it means Lewis County will stay far behind the rest of the world and will stay that way until people actually read what these issues are actually about and not what their preferred media source tells them. This is NOT what CRT is: The new policy, passed June 15, provides that schools will not teach that some students are inherently good and others are inherently bad based on their outward appearance.

CRT teaches that race is a social construct, and that racism is not merely the product of individual bias or prejudice, but also something embedded in legal systems and policies. The fact that people don't receive this education is why so many people around here do not think racism still exists and think systemic racism isn't real. In fact, CRT delivers on what this "author" wants to deliver on - it teaches kids the facts and lets them make up their own minds. By sweeping it under the rug, you're actually teaching them a political ideology - you are basically saying systemic racism doesn't exist which IS a political ideology.

Friday, July 9
Chrissy

CRT is propaganda. If you understood the history and did research on this it is just another form of Marxist ideology but instead of using class it’s using race. If you knew you history and did research you would see that this is what hitler used on the Jews, and what Stalin used to kill millions of Ukrainian people. CRT creates racism which if you know your constitution and civil rights act of 1964 you would know that by allowing CRT you are violating these god given rights that our forefathers and president Kennedy put into place. Obviously the people who are for CRT need an education on our founding principles and our history. I can provide you many articles on CRT. People of every color are fighting this around the world, open your eyes to the truth. Check out Chris Rufo’s article and many more.

In my line of work we are doing tracings on this garbage and it is a race play. If you can not see or understand this than there is something wrong. No child needs to be taught any of this. Kids don’t look at skin color, and that’s exactly what it is. There are the oppressed and the oppressors according to this garbage.

I am proud of the parents fighting against this as I am myself for two communities and have got a ton of people involved and fighting back. Our children are our future and if you think this is a set back, you don’t have the information to understand what it is. They’re using social justice, equity, etc as soft words to get you to think it’s a good thing. But in reality it is socialism. It is indoctrination, look into what it did to the Chinese as well.

If you are for this, you are for killing others and taking peoples rights away and blaming others for nothing they have done. This is a political stand that is using our children as the weapons. No thank you. Take the race baiting somewhere else because it does not belong here in our schools or country.

Monday, July 19