According to Shannon Prince, a lawyer at Boies Schiller Flexner, and a legal commentator, “Moves to silence critical race theory have only amplified its virtues.
As Douglass taught us, the knowledge that is forbidden to us is the knowledge that frees us. The instruction that we are told is unsafe, leads only to mischief and that is being made unlawful – that instruction is liberating. It offers the direct pathway to freedom. The proof of the revolutionary power of education that examines racism with candor and courage lies in the determination of those who seek to keep our children in ignorance. And that very determination should render us all the more resolute in seeking intelligence for them and for ourselves.
You can’t change a system you don’t know exists. And that’s why these legislators are enacting these ‘peculiar rules.’ They don’t want our children to know. They don’t want things to change.
But their plan backfired.
This time last year, systemic racism was an obscure concept. Thanks to the legislators banning it, it’s now a topic of popular conversation.”
In Indian River County, Florida the debate over selection on K-5 curriculum has been hotly debated at a series of school board meetings over the last three months and by a June 21, 2021 town hall meeting, with over 60 people, led by conservative Vero Beach activist Susan Mehiel.
At issue was the proposed selection of a curriculum for the 2021 – 2022 academic year developed by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in Boston, Massachusetts, which the group believes contains lessons based on “Social Emotional Learning” and “Critical Race Theory,” and how those concepts would indoctrinate students.
Several weeks ago, the Florida Board of Education effectively banned the concept of critical race theory from classroom discussions when it enacted tougher guidelines on how teachers deliver U.S. history, civics and government lessons.
Critical Race Theory puts forth the idea that racism is embedded in U.S. society and institutions.
Ms. Mehiel and other conservative activists advocated for the selection of another curriculum from Amplify Education Inc., of Brooklyn, NY.
Unfortunately, however, for these activists, the Florida Department of Education had rejected the Amplify curriculum. Though they had approved the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt curriculum.
Amplify appealed the state board’s rejection of its K-5 curriculum, which was supported by School Board member Teri Barenborg and conservative political activist Ms. Mehiel.
Amplify’s appeal was successful and it was announced on July 2, 2021 that the School District had chosen the Amplify curriculum, which will be utilized by students and teachers in kindergarten through fifth grade for the 2021 – 2022 school year.
It is worth noting that on June 10, Jack Lynch, CEO of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt wrote to the School Board Chair of Collier County, Naples, FL that “Unequivocally HMH’s program neither contains nor teaches Critical Race Theory, nor is Critical Race Theory embedded in HMH’s K-5 instructional materials…HMH does not advocate for any particular ideology, political organization or agenda. Our aim is simply to help teachers teach and students learn.”
It is also worth noting that Amplify’s “Commitment,” as displayed as a vital component of their business on their homepage, is as follows”
Our goal is to make education, and thereby the world, more equitable.
We create education products that celebrate difference in life and thought as well as ideals we may hold in common.
We help teachers craft rigorous learning experiences that reflect the diverse histories, cultures, and identities their students bring to the classroom.
We also help teachers support their students in constructing, questioning, expanding, and strengthening knowledge of where they come from and who they are becoming.
To do this, we hire and develop people with the broadest range of talents, life stories and experiences, and together we build a diverse and inclusive culture.”
Then we found these posts:
Let’s see what happens and how the teachers and parents respond to the new curriculum. They are the change agents.