A group called Families for Freedom recently took issue with a “race, gender, equality, and inclusivity” vocabulary packet produced by a Connecticut 10th grade English teacher, alleging that it was critical race theory (CRT).
Educators rallied to defend the packet, arguing the parents were threatening free speech and suggesting their protests were equivalent to book burning. Not surprisingly, 62 faculty from Southern Connecticut State University signed on to a letter in this vein.
According to the Hartford Courant, “The SCSU faculty said that while parents are free to engage in or refrain from speaking about topics concerning sexuality and racism in their own homes, they should not manage classroom instruction.”
So parents should just have faith that teachers will be responsible in how they instruct their children? Considering the state of public education in America, that would amount to dereliction of parental duty. Also, why is an English teacher educating students on these topics? They seem irrelevant and unnecessarily imposed.
Families for Freedom was not unreasonable, stating that these topics should be taught, but that they should be taught as theory, not facts. Some quotes from the packet appear to be stating facts such as: “No individual is personally responsible for what white people have done or the historical decisions of the American government, but you are responsible for whether you are currently upholding the systems that elevate white people over people of color.”
Quite a large responsibility for a 10th grade English class student …
Maybe if this was a sociology class, this packet would be justified, but these issues should not be forced into an English class.
It is understandable why parents would be outraged at this and it should be celebrated that they are taking such an interest in their children’s education. Parents should respect teachers, but they shouldn’t be expected to unconditionally trust them. There should be dialogue and compromise, not criticism and shunning.