Submitted by Jeff Brown.
My name is Jeff Brown and I am running for the Clover Park School Board in Position 3.
This weekend I was able to visit hundreds of homes in Lakewood and more deeply understand what weighs in the hearts and minds of families regard the education of their children in Clover Park Schools.
The two resounding questions that I get are:
- ‘What is your position on Critical Race THEORY (CRT) in our schools?’
- ‘Is there systemic racism in our country, and more specifically in Clover Park Schools?’
There on only a few days left ahead of Clover Park School Board elections on August 3rd and I would like to be very clear what my position on this topic is and why it matters.
CTR appears to be the ‘hottest’ controversy across the country because it is on the agenda for consideration in most every state and at every level of governance. It is also in the Human Resource agenda’s of large and small companies alike across America.
I believe most of us abhor racism and particularly in its overt manifestations.
I believe most people also recognize that racism comes through veiled and unspoken means which is also harmful to the victims.
I believe racism resides in the hearts and minds of individuals, which can permeate groups and institutions.
CRT is in fact a theory that seems to say that we live in a society that is intrinsically racist and that racism comes from one particular race which is against all of the others.
CRT is racist in itself and if implemented in our schools, it will ‘pit’ one race against itself and all of the others as well.
CRT will divide staff, students, and parents rather than unite and its already happening.
CRT will re-write the history we impart to our children with a myopic agenda supporting ‘systemic racism’.
CRT will distract Clover Park School District from it one clear mission of educating our kids in the fundamentals language, math, science, civics, and the arts.
When I started my campaign to run for the School Board, I made a commitment to the families of Lakewood, that I would protect our children from special interest narratives (including CRT), which detract our focus from fundamental education.
That is what I intend to do if elected. Please keep asking questions.
The views expressed in this article are the writer’s own.
Joseph Boyle says
Mr. Jeff Brown,
While we do not know each other and I believe we have never met, I must say to you, WELL SAID!
Good luck to you on your election efforts. We need individuals on the board who will focus on what is best for the students of the Clover Park School District.
Joseph Boyle – Former Lakewood Resident – 51 years
Jeff Brown says
Thank you so much Joeseph!! Spread the word!!
Rick Hjelm says
You’ld like Jeff Brown. You’re both common sense thinkers.
John Arbeeny says
Never stop questioning. It’s how you grow and how you know. There is too much of “going along to get along” in our elective offices, to include the Clover Park School Board where raising a question about the status quo is seen as disloyal or confrontational: it is neither. How else would you expect to progress at anything if you didn’t question the world around you? A sad commentary on CPSD’s dismal academic performance because no one wants to ask the question: why?
Dave Burgoyne says
Is this even an issue or are we jumping on what promises to be the “latest boogeyman”? My understanding is that most of us don’t really understand Critical Race Theory, that it is a concept taught primarily in graduate schools, and is not part of any k-12 curriculum. Is Clover Park about to introduce it to third graders? Somehow it has caught the attention of politicians and is ridden like a trick pony as a form of virtue signaling. Instead of sending Paul Revere out to warn us of impending doom, let’s have a civil, open discussion on its merits/demerits. This would seem to echo John’s suggestion (a good one) that we “never stop questioning.”
It’s all driven by the far right extremist movement using the threat of CRT to create fear in local school board elections in order to get people out to vote based fear.This effort is being reported all over the country. There’s really a lot of intentional CRT political spin and disinformation coming from David Anderson, Brown and their mostly republican donors and supporters. Jeff Brown just copied and pasted the same CRT propaganda handed to him from his political sources. CRT is their newest dog whistle; make certain voters and/or parents believe the schools are teaching really bad stuff to kids.
Jeff Brown said at a recent candidate forum he doesn’t believe ANY curriculum should be taught with race involved. I guess he would rewrite the US History books?
Jeff Brown also said a school board member should answer to “the voting families”. Really? I believe school board members should answer to all families who have children enrolled in our district. Our students are in trouble if people with this extremist political agenda control our school district; one which serves a very diverse population.
Bob Warfield says
“CRT” seeks to comprehend the complexities of social order and institutional influence among the myriad attitudes, dynamic interplay and historical consequence of politics and policy bearing upon lived intra-racial experience and opportunity. Those who claim its final affirmation or denial fail to grasp, assuming they even care, that it is a civil discussion intended to enlarge our knowledge and understanding toward leveling the commons of access and opportunity at the heart of America’s Constitutional promise to affirm “We the People …” CRT is not an argument about pedagogy or curricula, to teach or not, it is an considered and comprehensive exploration about and within the historical and contemporary context of who WE are as one nation, with justice for ALL.
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_race_theory). Please leave a donation while you’re there.
Thank you, Bob! I would hope all of the school board candidates take time to understand what CRT is and what it isn’t. It is embarrassing and alarming that two school board candidates, who want to make educational decisions for our children, are so ill-informed. Creating distrust in our educational system based on a political agenda, fear-mongering, need for power, gossip, and the spreading of disinformation threatens our future as a Democracy.
John Arbeeny says
The reality is that NEA, WEA and CPEA have all endorsed CRT. It is mandated by the Legislature to be taught to teachers on one of their 3 annual training days. CRT isn’t just about an intellectual exploration of race. It is the use of race as the basis for how people are categorized and treated in our society. CRT doesn’t have to be taught as part of the curriculum: it only has to be implemented with the emphasis on race. Children learn a lot more from how they’re treated than anything taught in the classroom. Race is after all CRT’s middle name. It is a Marxist based ideology which replaces economics with race as part of Critical Theory. To say otherwise is an attempt to neuter what CRT is really all about.
Bea Harman says
Thank you Mr. Brown for making your position clear. Are there any candidates for the board that are endorsing teaching Analytical Thinking or Critical Thinking at all levels?
I think there is some confusion about the acronym ‘CRT’–we may be getting lost in alphabet soup so to speak. What public school teachers (as I am one and have worked recently in Clover Park and in Tacoma) are being asked to do regarding training is known as Culturally Responsive Teaching, NOT Critical Race Theory. These are DIFFERENT things. What our unions have endorsed is Culturally Responsive Teaching, seeking to give representation and voice to ALL of our students in a more authentic way.
What are the 5 core components of culturally responsive teaching?
-Positive perspectives on parents and families.
-Communication of high expectations.
-Learning within the context of culture.
-Culturally mediated instruction.
-Reshaping the curriculum.
-Teacher as facilitator.
These are simply good practices for all teachers and learners at any age. For more information about the resources being used: https://crtandthebrain.com/book/