OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
The largest teachers’ union in the United States, the National Education Association, has approved of a plan to promote Critical Race Theory to all fifty states throughout 14,000 local school districts.
The decision was made at the 2021 NEA Annual Meeting, where a number of significant issues were discussed, including a vote on mandatory COVID vaccinations, masks, and testing for students.
As detailed by the now-approved proposal, teachers will be required to learn more about CRT and fight back against anti-CRT efforts, including efforts to dispute the widely debunked New York Times’ 1619 Project, an alternate retelling of American history that claims the Founding Fathers declared independence to protect slavery.
They will also be required to provide an in-depth curriculum that “critiques empire, white supremacy, anti-Blackness, anti-Indigeneity, racism, patriarchy, cisheteropatriarchy, capitalism, ableism, anthropocentricism” and a host of other oppressive forces.
Furthermore, teachers will emphasize topics of slavery and the oppression of “Indigenous, Black, Brown, and other peoples of color” in American society. Teachers must also “join with Black Lives Matter at School and the Zinn Education Project” to rally on October 14, George Floyd’s birthday, to be turned into a “national day of action to teach lessons about structural racism and oppression.”
According to New Business Item 39 on the agenda, the NEA will, with guidance on implementation from the NEA president and chairs of the Ethnic Minority Affairs Caucuses:
Share and publicize, through existing channels, information already available on critical race theory (CRT) — what it is and what it is not; have a team of staffers for members who want to learn more and fight back against anti-CRT rhetoric; and share information with other NEA members as well as their community members.
Provide an already-created, in-depth, study that critiques empire, white supremacy, anti-Blackness, anti-Indigeneity, racism, patriarchy, cisheteropatriarchy, capitalism, ableism, anthropocentrism, and other forms of power and oppression at the intersections of our society, and that we oppose attempts to ban critical race theory and/or The 1619 Project.
Publicly (through existing media) convey its support for the accurate and honest teaching of social studies topics, including truthful and age-appropriate accountings of unpleasant aspects of American history, such as slavery, and the oppression and discrimination of Indigenous, Black, Brown, and other peoples of color, as well as the continued impact this history has on our current society. The Association will further convey that in teaching these topics, it is reasonable and appropriate for curriculum to be informed by academic frameworks for understanding and interpreting the impact of the past on current society, including critical race theory.
Join with Black Lives Matter at School and the Zinn Education Project to call for a rally this year on October 14—George Floyd’s birthday—as a national day of action to teach lessons about structural racism and oppression. Followed by one day of action that recognize and honor lives taken such as Breonna Taylor, Philando Castile, and others. The National Education Association shall publicize these National Days of Action to all its members, including in NEA Today.
Conduct a virtual listening tour that will educate members on the tools and resources needed to defend honesty in education including but not limited to tools like CRT.
Commit President Becky Pringle to make public statements across all lines of media that support racial honesty in education including but not limited to critical race theory.
As detailed by anti-CRT crusader Christopher Rufo, the union has also approved funding for “increasing the implementation” of Critical Race Theory in K-12 curricula and for attacking conservative organizations and individuals who oppose CRT. The organization has made it its number one priority.
The union has also approved funding for "increasing the implementation" of CRT in K-12 curricula and for attacking conservative groups who oppose CRT indoctrination.
The teachers union has made critical race theory its #1 priority—and want to implement it nationwide. pic.twitter.com/QaeTBouTf2
— Christopher F. Rufo ⚔️ (@realchrisrufo) July 4, 2021