The new school year is still weeks away in California, but summer break has hardly been a carefree romp on the beach. On July 12th, the California Department of Public Health, ignoring CDC guidance, announced that all students and adults – vaccinated or not – must wear masks inside school buildings. Then within hours, the rules changed…sorta. While the guidance remains, it was announced that enforcement would be left to local education officials. In other words, school board meetings in the near future will be bloody affairs, with mask hawks battling free-breathers. It’s worth noting that California is in the top tier of states with the strictest mask mandates.
Many parents are up in arms. “It’s outrageous,” Jonathan Zachreson, a father of three students and founder of Reopen California Schools, told The Associated Press, “We’re continuing to put the burden of this pandemic on our children, and it needs to stop.” He also slammed Governor Newsom, calling him “a fake governor who has not listened to the science” during the coronavirus pandemic, and said his volunteer-run organization of families would file a lawsuit in the coming weeks. Let Them Breathe, another group that disdains masks, is also planning a lawsuit.
The results of the latest study on masks released in May by the University of Louisville backs Zachreson’s contention, finding that “mask mandates and use are not associated with slower state-level COVID-19 spread during COVID-19 growth surges.”
Moving on to the culture wars, in an important, albeit temporary victory, the adoption of the new and heavily politicized Mathematics Curriculum Framework in California has been delayed until late this year or possibly early 2022. The postponement came after a group of scientists, mathematicians, and engineers signed an open letter to the California Board of Education denouncing the plan because it would “de-mathematize math.” The letter pointed to specific objectionable content, such as promoting fringe teaching methods like “trauma-informed pedagogy.” Also, teachers would be asked to insert “environmental and social justice” into the curriculum, and suggests that they should develop students’ “sociopolitical consciousness.”
Williamson Evers, a senior fellow at the Independent Institute, and one of the letter’s drafters, summed it up. “California is on the verge of politicizing K-12 math in a potentially disastrous way. This postponement means the State Board of Education has heard the message loud and clear. STEM leaders don’t want California students left behind by introducing politics into the math curriculum.”
Then there’s AB 101 which is still going through the legislative meat grinder. As the bill stands now, a one-semester course in ethnic studies will be required for all California high school students, starting with pupils graduating in the 2029–30 school year. The subject matter of the course, however, will be decided by the “the governing board of the school district or the governing body of the charter school.”
In Alameda County, the Hayward Unified School District has already approved a $40 million ethnic studies program which uses the Liberated Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum. The LESMC is infused with Critical Race Theory, and employs every CRT buzz term imaginable to get its indoctrination across. For example, it asks students to “critique imperialist/colonial hegemonic beliefs and to critique 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.”
In Salinas, a bit to the south of Hayward in Monterey County, parents are up in arms after learning of the school district’s adopted curriculum, which includes “Reclaiming race as a space of people of color empowerment in the 1960’s-today: Black Power, Red Power, Brown Power, Yellow Power, White Allies in Solidarity” and “The Real Life Education Situation as Institutional Oppression for Communities of Color: The Education Debt and Opportunity/Achievement Gap; Deficit Thinking and Internalized Oppression; Disconnection/Alienation.”
With over a thousand school districts in California, the ethnic studies wars, not to mention mask mandates, will be fought many times throughout the state in the coming months. To stop the radical bullies, parents must get very involved and raise hell at school board meetings, and if the results are not to their liking, they must yank their kid out of that school district. Forced masking and indoctrination into radical CRT tenets should not be tolerated by any parent.
Additionally, even if you don’t have a child in a public school, keep in mind that your tax dollars are supporting the education establishment. So all citizens have a stake in getting involved in the ethnic studies imbroglio. And the time to take action is now. Right now.
[Originally posted on California Policy Center]