NYT Repeatedly Frets Over Threat From 'Conservative' School Board

September 24th, 2014 6:00 PM

In case one didn't know, there's a "conservative" school board in Colorado that is facing protests. In just 17 paragraphs, New York Times reporter Jack Healy worried about "conservatives" five times. The writer explained that "A new conservative school board majority here in the Denver suburbs recently proposed a curriculum-review committee to promote patriotism, respect for authority and free enterprise..." 

He added, "Almost from the outset, the three conservative newcomers to the five-person board clashed with the two others, and a steady stream of 3-to-2 votes came to represent the sharp divisions on the board and in the community." 

Healy underlined: 

The teachers’ union, whose members forced two high schools to close Friday by calling in sick, has been in continual conflict with the new board; the board, in turn, has drawn praise from Americans for Prosperity-Colorado, a conservative group affiliated with the Koch family foundations. 

We’ve had conservatives on our board before,” said Michele Patterson, the president of the district’s parent-teacher association.

In March 2010, a similar debate roiled the Texas Board of Education as its members voted overwhelmingly to adopt a social studies curriculum that heralded American capitalism and ensured that students would learn about the conservative movement’s rise in the 1980s.

Healy featured Ken Witt, the school board's president, for comment. More common, however, were angry students attacking America: 

Leighanne Grey, a senior at Arvada High School, said that after second period, a student ran through the halls yelling, “The protest is still on!” and she and scores of her classmates got up and left.

She said that learning about history, strife and all, had given her a clearer understanding of the country.

“As we grow up, you always hear that America’s the greatest, the land of the free and the home of the brave,” she said. “For all the good things we’ve done, we’ve done some terrible things. It’s important to learn about those things, or we’re doomed to repeat the past.

Unlike the "conservative" school board, the students weren't identified as "liberal."