Don’t Let Misinformation Obscure Facts
To the Editor:
Parents fear for our precious children when we perceive they are in danger. School has started and once again Newtown parents are expressing fear of their children being “indoctrinated” and “sexualized” at school.
Fear of “CRT.” Fear of children learning to hate our country. Fear of white children feeling guilty about being white. Fear of transgender girls attacking other girls in school bathrooms. Where is all this fear coming from?
I believe much of it stems from misinformation in the media. When our fear starts to soar, so do their ratings. When we are outraged, they make money. I challenge you to check multiple, non-partisan sources next time something you hear on cable news sounds scary or outrageous. You may be able to ease your mind by simply checking your sources for accuracy.
Many Americans have come to believe that Critical Race Theory — a concept taught in some law schools — is being taught in K-12. It’s not. It never has been and it never will be.
But there has been a push to teach accurate American history and to stop glossing over topics that illuminate our country’s mistakes. This approach embraces a culturally responsive curriculum that teaches, for example, the history of our ancestors of color along with that of our white, male ancestors. I am far more frightened of students being taught inaccurate or incomplete history than I am of their feelings being out of whack because they’ve learned some perspectives that center Americans who weren’t white.
(Obviously, we should have strong feelings when we read about injustices against our fellow human beings, but should curriculum be based on facts or feelings?)
How’s this for some homework? Turn off your TV and go to a primary source for information. If you are upset about DEI in your child’s school, you can read the Newtown BOE’s Equity and Diversity policy. My guess is that the more you understand DEI, the less scared you’ll feel.
If that’s not the case, perhaps some soul-searching is in order. What exactly are you afraid of? What horrible thing is going to happen to your child if all children are afforded equal respect and opportunity?
I like to think we all want many of the same things. We want our children to be intellectually curious; to have a firm grasp of our country’s history and how that shapes who we are today; to be kind and appreciative of differences; to feel that they belong, are safe, and that their community cares about them; to have a solid education that prepares them for the “real world” they will encounter when they move on from Newtown.
An educational system that embraces DEI can achieve those goals. Without it, students of varying race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical ability….all of those precious children are put at risk. Surely that’s not what you want.
There will always be plenty to worry about when it comes to our children. DEI shouldn’t be one of them.