As a proud American and public school teacher, I tell students every day that they can achieve anything through hard work and dedication. I cannot imagine teaching children that success is determined by the color of your skin. Yet, many far-left activists in the North Carolina public education system are trying to divide our youth through Critical Race Theory (CRT). CRT argues that America is irredeemably racist, making children believe they are inherently either a bully or a victim. This not only diminishes the quality of education for our students, but it also undermines our nation’s history of social progress and divides and demoralizes our youth.
Just this year, the Wake County Public School System offered a training course called “Intro to Critical Race Theory.” It pushed teachers to view their classroom through the lens of “race and privilege,” virtually labeling students as either the “oppressor” or the “oppressed.” After news outlets exposed Wake County Schools for the politically motivated training, the district removed it.
But Wake County has a troubling history of prioritizing the leftwing political agenda over academic achievement in public schools. Last February, they hosted a seminar entitled “Whiteness in Ed Spaces.” Instructors were encouraged to “disrupt the system” through “transformational interventions,” essentially asking teachers to assume the role of the parent and impress their “woke” values on children.
To make matters worse, other counties are following Wake County’s cue. The Durham City Council recently passed a resolution that asks state and federal representatives to “work to ensure… critical race theory is included in our students’ public school education.” Additionally, this summer, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools used North Carolinians’ taxpayer dollars to pay Critical Race Theorist Ibram X Kendi $25,000 to speak at an event.
As an educator, I have witnessed North Carolina parents voice their concerns over the corrosive effects of CRT. They have held protests, attended school board meetings, and expressed a renewed desire for school choice. Republicans understand diversity should be celebrated, not weaponized, and are working hard to restore unity and national pride in our schools.
In May, Republicans in the North Carolina House passed H.B. 324, preventing educators from teaching concepts “contrary to the equality of all people,” including the idea that “one race or sex is superior to another.” Republican Superintendent Catherine Truitt, who helped draft the bill, called it “common-sense.” She said, “Classrooms should be an environment where all points of view are honored. There is no room for divisive rhetoric that condones preferential treatment of any one group over another.”
Yesterday, Republicans in the North Carolina Senate introduced legislation to address anti-discrimination in the classroom. It does not permit public schools to teach that “an individual should be discriminated against or receive adverse treatment solely or partly because of his or her race or sex.”
The Republican North Carolina Congressional delegation is bringing the fight against indoctrination in our schools to Washington, D.C. In the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman Dan Bishop (NC-9) introduced the “Stop CRT Act,” which would ban federal funds from being used to promote and teach CRT. In the U.S. Senate, Senator Thom Tillis co-sponsored the “Saving American History Act,” which would prohibit the use of federal funds to teach the factually inaccurate 1619 Project in K-12 public schools.
I believe the public education system is where the American Dream begins. As Democrats use CRT as a tool to spread divisive propaganda for political gain, Republicans are committed to instilling in our children that the United States truly is the land of opportunity.
Susan Mills is the vice chair of the North Carolina Republican Party