Submitted by John Arbeeny.
I became suspicious of the CPSD Critical Race Theory “stakeholders” the moment that I saw the percentages that made up this group of 83 alleged community representatives as stated in various Youtube videos and District documents.
- CPSD staff: 24% (20)
- Teachers: 19% (16)
- Community members: 31% (26)
- Students/Alumni: 15% (12…..4 current and 8 alumni)
- Parents/family: 8% (7)
The obvious begs the question: “Why are 43% of the stakeholders CPSD employees and what exactly is their stake in CRT?” The answer is obvious: their stake in CRT is about keeping their jobs! None of them are going to say “peep” about any disagreement with the District’s CRT program. So we have nearly half the stakeholders “front loaded” in support of CRT even though the impact will be felt most heavily on parents (7) and current students (4): a total of 11 real stakeholders out of 83 appointed.
Additionally the feedback from stakeholder surveys conducted after two sessions was 100% positive on survey questions; not a single disagreement among 83 people on something so controversial as CRT. Now you can’t get unanimity among 83 people on whether the sun will come up tomorrow so this was yet another “red flag” about the legitimacy of the stakeholders and anything that comes out of the CPSD “Equity Journey”.
Thus I filed a Freedom of Information Act request (FOIA) for the selection criteria, names, positions, organization association, and race of all the stakeholders from CPSD. What I got was a single list of names and reams of emails minus their most important attachments. So I started through the name list and did my own detective work to make some sense of it: I started Google-ing names. Ahhh! Isn’t the Internet wonderful!
Then lo and behold: the truth began to emerge. Preliminary search of about 20 “community members” revealed that many of them were either directly or indirectly involved in CRT as academics, related service business owners, CRT employees elsewhere, board/committee members or in political positions where they have openly supported CRT. It is a veritable “who’s who” of local CRT supporters coupled with the captive CPSD employees which together make up 75% of the alleged “stakeholders”!
Make no mistake about it these stakeholders do not represent the parents and students of Clover Park School District. They represent the “intellectual elite” promised by WEB Du Bois a century ago and the many academic proponents of CRT since the 1970’s to lead the “people of color” into the future whether we like it or not; whether we vote for it or not; and ultimately whether our children graduate any better prepared for adult life or not. Front loading the entire CRT program in order to get the desired result is fraudulent, intellectually dishonest and deceptive. This deliberately deceptive bias totally delegitimizes any conclusions the CPSD CRT program has developed to date.
Yet, President Marty Schafer, endorsed by the CPSD teachers union has been oblivious to what is happening before his very eyes; a perfect choice to represent the union on the Board; not the people of Lakewood. His campaign signs claim “Leadership that listens”. The question is “Whom exactly is he listening to?” The Superintendent? Administration? The teachers union? Yes but sadly the students and parents of this community not so much. Did you know that on 9/12/16 Board President Schafer’s other Board members (over objections by Board member Paul Wagemann) voted to approve a “tentative” union contract which included a 10.2% pay raise without ever having actually seen or read the 76 page agreement? Ironically The News Tribune got a copy of the proposal before the Board! I guess you have to pass it first to find out what’s in it. Now is that “trust” in, or maybe just rolling over for, the union. It must be nice to have a union “representative” on the school Board!
Oh by the way: another member of that stakeholder group? Darwin Peters! This is the very individual with a photo of a BLM Molotov cocktail being thrown on his Facebook page which he took down advisedly while simultaneously quoting Scripture. A veritable “CRT wolf in sheep’s clothing”? He too has been endorsed by the District’s teachers union! That should give you some idea of the union’s priorities: Board members in lock step with the union and its emphasis locally, statewide (WEA) and nationally (NEA) in support of CRT! In my view, the teachers’ union endorsement should signify candidates NOT to vote for.
Want to see CPSD further radicalized? Accept the front loaded process of biased stakeholders, a union lackey and a bomb throwing candidate: both frauds within the fraud that is the CRT based “Equity Journey”. Want to make academic excellence CPSD’s priority? Scrap the deceptive CRT program and vote in new leadership that understands the District’s prime directive is to educate not indoctrinate. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting the results to change. Let’s make that change on 3 August 2021. The choice is up to you. Choose wisely.
The views expressed in this article are the writer’s own.
DAVID G ANDERSON says
In any – as in any – consideration, discussion, deliberation, let alone decision – of a school district, who are the ‘stakeholders?’
Whose support is critical without which support the school district would not exist?
“In the last decades of the 20th century, the word ‘stakeholder’ became more commonly used to mean a person or organization that has a legitimate interest in a project or entity” (Wikipedia on ‘stakeholder’).
Who are the people that have the greatest ‘legitimate interest’ – by far – in the ‘entity’ known as the school district?
Who has an unparalleled investment, interest or ‘stake’ in what the ‘entity’, known as the school district, does?
Whether a business corporation, government agency, non-profit organization, but especially a school district, who – more than anyone else – ‘pays into’ the school district as in property taxes, levies and bonds, not to mention their greatest investment by far – their children?
Answer these questions and you have the primary ‘stakeholders’ of a school district and it is these ‘stakeholders’ whose wants and expectations, attitudes (supportive, neutral or opposed) must not only be understood but prioritized.
After all, the resources upon which a school district is most – most – dependent, are scarce so a school district must never give only token or passing acknowledgment to its most significant stakeholders.
“Stakeholder management is particularly important in crisis contexts, where stakeholder demands are typically more salient and can conflict with an organization’s (school district’s) predetermined plans.”
And yet – and yet – in this ‘stakeholder’ group participating in the Clover Park School District’s Equity Journey, how many of the 83 describe your answer to all the questions posed above?
This has to be one of the most intentionally ugly and nasty school board campaigns we have ever experienced in Lakewood and it’s all coming from two candidates and their supporters. I am sick of these unhinged personal attacks on Marty Schafer, Alyssa Pearson and now Darwin Peters.
Let this sink in:
It was just strongly stated by a top donor to Anderson’s campaign that the evil mission of CRT since the 1970’s was “to lead the people of color into the future whether we like it or not.”
Who is the “WE”?!!
Is it you and a few friends with your beliefs or are you now speaking for all the citizens of Lakewood?
It is crystal clear to me that Anderson has no intention of representing all stakeholders. There’s another agenda.
John Arbeeny says
So you’re equating actual facts and figures which show incumbent Board member actions and District academic performance as “………intentionally ugly and nasty….? To my knowledge no one has made a personal attack on either Schafer or Alyssa or Peters. There has been a lot of criticism about their job performance, values, principles, positions, etc. but no one has called them “evil, hateful, bigots, etc.” which leftist routinely call anyone who disagrees with them.
I suspect that the current alleged “stake holders” grossly over represent the small coterie of CRT supporters in staff and “community” and almost none of the parents in the community who are pushing back against what amounts to the District’s unilateral move towards CRT. The latter are the ones Anderson and Brown have pledged to represent; the former need no representation…..they are already over represented.
John Arbeeny says
Just so there’s no mistake!
“The latter are the ones DAVID Anderson (not the other one!) and Jeff Brown have pledged to represent; the former need no representation…..they are already over represented.”
Cleo Brandt says
Excellent article and analogy of what too place behind everyone’s back, thank you Paul Wagemann, you are the better person on the School Board to object to the “Just vote for it and read it later, Nancy Pelosi style vote!” That is just shameful at best, all of them except Paul Wagemann should be removed from office! CRT is bad for our Kid, bad for our Parents, bad for our society, we should be making peace and all should be equal not divided!
John Arbeeny says
Even the Clover Park Education Association (CPEA….the local teacher’s union) May 2021 Update implies that the CPSD equity policy “stakeholders” are something of a fraud. “They (CPSD) have met with community stakeholders, staff parents, and students………….Ron (Ron Banner Superintendent) was clear that the district is getting a lot of pushback on adopting this (Equity policy). The district’s philosophy is that we need to move forward with this work in order to best support our kids.”
We now know the alleged “stakeholder” identities from Freedom of Information Act request 21-47 to have only 7 parents out of 83 members. We also know that these alleged “stakeholders” were “front loaded” for their support of CRT generally and the equity policy specifically. We also know that the two surveys conducted with these alleged “stakeholders” yielded 100% “support” of the equity policy. So who is it that is exerting “a lot of pushback on adopting this policy”? It certainly isn’t the alleged “stakeholders”. No, it was and is today the legions of student parents who were locked out of any representation on this group of alleged “stakeholders” and equity policy process: a deceptive fraud perpetrated by the District and Superintendent in which the Board incumbents were complicit.
And yet, the District has decided its “philosophy” trumps the will of the parents who elected the
Board, pays the Superintendent, administration and staff salaries and the desires of parents who actually know best how to support “their kids”. “Their kids” are lent to the District by parents to obtain an academically excellent education which carries them successfully into adulthood. That isn’t happening.
They are not “our kids” as claimed by the District for whom the District can decide what’s best without parental input. The District’s equity policy is and will remain totally irrelevant until true participation by the students’ parents occurs and not until then. That will only occur with replacement of Board incumbents Marty Schafer and Alyssa ANDERSON Pearson by candidates who value the opinions of the people who elected them: David Anderson and Jeff Brown.
James Grimsey says
I would like anyone to tell me in what classes crt is being taught. Or is just another example of the right wing nut jobs trying to make everyone afraid of their own shadow? I do want to thank mr. Arbeeny for pointing out the candidates that I will not consider, he and those of his ilk are racist.
MM Russell says
It’s important in reading this letter to the editor and the comments to note that CRT (critical race theory) is not and has not been adopted nor approve by the CPSD board.
In fact the author of this letter was present at a recent ‘Meet the Candidates’ public meeting when our current school board president and candidate for re-election Marty Schafer again repeated that he opposes the overly-political and divisive precepts related to CRT and yet in listening to our diverse community that he does support greater equity-awareness but specifically does not support CRT as the means to do so.