20 November 2021
I want to issue a warning to all of my friends who support Parents’ Choice. The rhetoric of the last election season puts us at a very dangerous crossroads. As we celebrate the election of candidates who support the right of parents to choose the best school for their child – whether progressive or conservative – we must also speak out against any possible hijacking of our decades-long struggle for the empowerment of parents through school choice.
As analysts analyze data from a political race, they may try to group all of the supporters of parenting choice in one inbox. To be clear, we are not a monolithic electoral bloc that does not agree with just teaching our country’s history to our children. We want our children to learn about slavery and the lingering effects of racism.
There are people here who believe that the school environment that is best suited for their child is one in which Toni Morrison’s novels are not part of the curriculum. And it’s good. They can have their choice, just as we can have ours. However, my appeal to my friends in the education reform movement does not allow a highly respected, well-regarded, and in many ways revered author in the black community to be demonized as a political hot potato.
I implore those of us in the Parents’ Choice community to make it clear that we stand up for parents with the right to choose and educators with the power to create programs that tell the truth in a way that will allow our children to be braver than us. , ready and ready to face the future because they learned about the past from their ancestors.
This year’s political campaigns would have you believe that parent choice advocates side with one political party rather than the other, simply because our interests converge on public charter schools. This is simply not true. Let us not let politicians divert our advocacy to better meet their needs.
As a black parent and leader of the Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools, it is very clear to me that the choice of education is a winning political platform and healthy politics. Our Coalition is an organization that currently has 250 organizational members in 21 states that collectively serve over one million black and brown families. We believe parents have the freedom to choose the best schools for their children, regardless of income or zip code. We fight every day for these liberating freedoms.
We cannot allow parents’ choice to be blurred by voices opposing the CRT, especially since they ignore at best that this is an academic theory that is discussed in graduate schools. and at worst, using it as an indirect argument against children’s learning. on the honest history of our country.
I am one of those who believe that children will be better citizens if they learn both the dark and the beautiful facts that make America the promising country that it is.
RaShaun Kemp is the Executive Director of the Freedom Coalition for Charter Schools, which promotes public charter schools and charters to advance and protect the right to self-determination of Blacks and Browns.
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