Yet another lawsuit has been filed against a school district for infusing its educational material with woke theology and elements of critical race theory. A middle school teacher is suing Evanston/Skokie School District 65 for discrimination, alleging that its policies violate federal law.
Stacy Deemar, a white teacher, argues in her complaint that the district is “conditioning individuals to see each other’s skin color first and foremost, then pitting different racial groups against each other.”
The teacher alleges that during training sessions, teachers were segregated and white educators were characterized as racist and privileged. Superintendent Devon Horton told teachers that if they are not antiracist, they “can’t have you in front of our students,” according to the lawsuit.
The plaintiff included an example of these ideas being introduced in the curriculum. In the complaint, an image from a lesson states that “whiteness is a bad deal” and includes a list titled “Contract Binding you to WHITENESS” which includes “stolen land, “stolen riches,” “special favors,” and a host of other items.
The suit goes on to state that racial lessons have “overtaken” District 65. The attorneys noted:
For years now, race-based programming has overtaken District 65 in the name of racial “equity.” What seems like a relatively benign cause—also euphemistically called “social justice,” “diversity and inclusion,” “critical race theory,” and “culturally responsive teaching”—is actually code-speak for a much bigger and more dangerous picture: the practice of conditioning individuals to see each other’s skin color first and foremost, then pitting different racial group against each other.
The plaintiff also alleges that each teacher is compelled to take antiracist training in which they are required to accept various aspects of Critical Race Theory (CRT) and other aspects of woke theology. This includes denouncing “white privilege,” understanding that “to be less white is to be less racially oppressive,” participating in “affinity groups” which are segregated by race, and admitting that “white identity is inherently racist.”
The Chicago Tribune noted that District 65 is “upfront about its race-conscious policies,” pointing out that its website states that it is focused on “the elimination of bias, particularly racism and cultural bias.”
Deemar alleges that the district is discriminating against her and other teachers and creating a hostile work environment.
In a released statement, Yoli Joseph, president of the Evanston/Skokie PTA Council said of those opposing these lessons that their “fragility” and “emotional response” to participate in something that “historically has not been asked of them, has been an uncomfortable experience.”
This story represents yet another battle in the debate over CRT and woke theology in America’s classrooms. While many on the right have mislabeled some of these teachings as CRT, it is clear that the content being taught to a disturbing number of students is both divisive and destructive. Whether some of these teachings come from CRT or from other areas of the woke religion one cannot ignore the pernicious impact this trend could have on students who are not given a proper balance.
As I’ve argued previously, the only way to crush these horrific ideas is to present better ones. Many on the right have celebrated the bans on CRT that some states have imposed. But believing this to be the ultimate victory is a mistake.
Teachers who wish to teach this material can simply find other ways to infuse it into their teaching. While we’re focusing on banning certain words or phrases, wokies in some school districts are simply picking up a thesaurus.
Moreover, it is important to note that the CRT battle is not confined to the classroom. The hard left is working day and night to push it into the rest of our institutions. These individuals are presenting these ideas as the solution to problems related to racial income, wealth, and educational disparities. If conservatives fail to put forth a better solution, what other option will Americans have?