The largest educators union in the country has vowed to “fight back” against those opposed to teaching critical race theory in schools and reiterated its support of the controversial “1619 Project.”
The National Education Association, which boasts 2.3 millions members, recently passed a resolution claiming it is “reasonable and appropriate” to include CRT in curriculum — and pledged to create “a team of staffers” to help teachers “fight back against anti-CRT rhetoric,” according to Fox News.
To boost the effort, the NEA will work to publicize “an already-created, in-depth study that critiques “white supremacy, anti-Blackness, anti-Indigeneity, racism, patriarchy … capitalism … and other forms of power and oppression,” according to the NEA site.
“We oppose attempts to ban critical race theory and/or The 1619 Project,” the NEA said.
CRT asserts that racism is not just about individual bias but systemic in society and government policies and institutions, including the legal system. The 1619 Project refers to efforts to focus on when the first African slaves arrived in America and their contributions to the country.
“To deny opportunities to teach truth about Black, Brown, and other marginalized races minimalizes the necessity for students to build efficacy,” the NEA said. “The ancient African proverb says, “Know Thyself.”
“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,” the union said.
The organization added that it will join with the Black Lives Matter at School campaign to treat Oct. 14 — George Floyd’s birthday — as a “day of action to teach lessons about structural racism and oppression.”
To bolster the campaign, NEA President Becky Pringle “will make public statements across all lines of media that support racial honesty in education including but not limited to critical race theory,” the group said.
The effort will cost $127,600, it said.
Parents have clashed with school boards across the country in recent months over the role of racially focused materials in classrooms.