Reading, Writing, and Racism
Saginaw County Educators Invoke Woke Agenda
Saginaw, MI (Great Lakes News) - Saginaw County educators are putting pressure on their employees and families in their school districts to “build a stronger, more inclusive place to live, work, go to school, and play.”
In a letter dated June 4, 2020, The Saginaw Intermediate School district informed county residents, families, and teachers of the county’s stepped-up efforts to handle racial reconciliation and bigotry in the wake of several African-American deaths, including George Floyd. The letter called Floyd’s passing “murder” even though the four police officers charged in his death have not had their day in court.
Fourteen superintendents signed the letter and expressed their commitment to provide a “safe learning environment free from racism and bigotry.”
One resident reached out to Great Lakes News after several sentences in the letter caused him concern. In the letter, it states school leaders will be “educating all staff members on unconscious bias and mitigating the impact of such [and] instituting curriculum addressing the history of racism and bigotry at all levels of our schools.”
Great Lakes News reached out to Dr. Kathy Stewart, Superintendent with the Saginaw Intermediate School District and asked her to clarify what those statements mean, which curriculum will be implemented, and how it will be enforced. Calls and emails to Dr. Stewart, along with two other school district superintendents in Saginaw County, were not returned.
Dr. Linda Lee Tarver, Vice President of the Michigan Republican Assembly, said this sort of policy achieves nothing for black children in public schools.
“This is a knee-jerk reaction,” Tarver said. “This isn’t meaningful change in education. Law enforcement is addressing those issues. The fact is most black people won’t encounter a police officer, but they will encounter a teacher every day.”
Tarver went on to say the focus in public education should be on basic skills rather than liberal agendas; she said white and black children must have the same quality of education statistically speaking and that one group should not be outperforming the other.
“If kids can’t read their own history, that’s racist in and of itself,” Tarver said. “Parents should be pissed-off that the outcome for these kids are not statistically equal compared to white kids. There is a plantation mindset in our inner schools. Once these kids are educated, they can be free,” Tarver said.