Minnesota licensing board using ‘mafia tactics’ on new teachers to accept critical race theory: Experts

Educators and policy experts are pushing back after the state of Minnesota’s educational licensing board voted to revamp its standards and require new teachers to adopt basic aspects of race theory and gender theory.

According to the latest “Effective Standards of Practice” issued by Minnesota’s Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB), teachers need to have different and diverse perspectives on “race, culture, language, gender identity, ability,” etc. Must commit to verifying. Licensed Educators in the Classroom.

The new passages suggest, along with several other passages in the existing standards, that teachers need to verify the “background and identity of students” in order to obtain a teaching license in the state. The rules will be in effect until 2025.

Rebecca Friedrichs, a 28-year-old public school teacher and founder of “For Kids and Country,” said every “buzzword” of the left’s political agenda is listed in the new standards.

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YORBA LINDA, CA, Tuesday, November 16, 2021 – The Placentia Yorba Linda School Board is debating a proposed resolution to ban the teaching of critical race theory in schools.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

“We’re hired to educate kids, not push a political agenda. And we’re hired to serve and work with kids and their parents,” he said.

The document states that teachers should create “opportunities for students to learn about power, privilege, interconnectedness, and systemic oppression in the context of diverse communities” and teach their students to “promote equity should be adapted to become “agents of social change”.

In addition, teachers are asked to learn and understand the effects of “systemic trauma” and how racism and “micro- and macro-aggressions” contribute to negative learning outcomes.

“We’re being told by a teaching licensing board, and by a union that claims to represent us, and by legislators that claim to represent the people that we have to do this,” Friedrichs said. are forced to.”

He added that teachers in the state are “trapped” and must choose to either lose their jobs or act against their conscience or against common sense and science.

Fredericks also claimed that many of the problems in schools in Minnesota and across the country are the fault of teachers’ unions. He described a system in which unions and their friends put into office people whom the union elects, not necessarily those whom teachers or citizens want.

In Minnesota, governors can appoint governing boards that come up with teacher licensing standards.

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Residents of Loudoun County, Virginia helped make critical theory of race a national conversation in 2021.

Residents of Loudoun County, Virginia helped make critical theory of race a national conversation in 2021.
(Reuters/Evelyn Hochstein)

According to Friedrichs, teachers unions in the state spend millions on glossy flyers with “cleverly worded language” to confuse people into voting against their values ​​and getting a governor of their choice into office.

He claimed that the entire board that came up with Minnesota Teacher Licensing is politicized, funded and promoted and lobbied by the same people who put them in office or put those people in office. kept by those who appointed them, while teachers are ignored.

“It’s called hooliganism. It’s mafia tactics. It’s running a cartel,” Friedrichs said.

The new rule changes will affect any aspiring teacher in the state, whether they work for public or private schools, said Catherine Wigfall, a policy fellow at the Center for the American Experiment. It would also affect teachers licensed through teacher pre-providers, who are completing initial T3 licensure, including adult learners who do not go through traditional additional preparation programs.

He said that the change in the rules may violate the religious freedom of teachers and increase the shortage of teachers.

The changes also introduce a gray area regarding whether the rules change when existing teachers try to renew their licenses. PELSB has stated that these standards will not affect the licensing renewal process, but the US experience is questionable due to vague language drawn from and influenced by Illinois.

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Illinois has similar changes in board rules that apply to current teachers. Several other states are expected to follow suit.

Board rule changes in Minnesota are not approved by the legislature but by a chief administrative law judge who will review the changes and identify whether they are within the board’s jurisdiction and approve or disapprove them. .

Policy changes should not affect curriculum, which is determined by school boards and not affect standards and best practices that are reviewed by the Department of Education. However, they set the tone and establish the framework for educators’ mindsets.

Wigfall said the affirmations in the new standard could infringe on religious liberties, which PELSB denied after public comments. Furthermore, when states are trying to increase diversity, they may prevent teachers from a variety of religious and ethnic backgrounds from entering the profession. He said legal action is coming down the pipeline soon from teachers affected by the rule changes.

Wigfall took issue with the passage calling for learners to be empowered to become “agents of social change”. He said the language was worrisome because it would encourage teachers to make students active, which is different from the goal of education. The section was originally disapproved by a judge but was overturned by the Chief Administrative Law Judge.

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Wigfall took issue with the passage calling for learners to be empowered to become "agents of social change".

Wigfall took issue with the passage calling for learners to be empowered to become “agents of social change”.

“I fear that the classroom will be encouraged to become a place for students to become social justice activists, social justice warriors, and I think will politicize the classroom and make it ideological,” he said. It will turn into a battlefield.”

Wigfall added that teachers are being asked to prioritize political and social activism in classrooms at a time when, like in Minnesota, Illinois students are performing poorly on basic skills tests.

Friedrichs said teachers need to break away from unions if they are interested in fighting the new standards.

She said teachers are stuck in a “unionized monopoly” and many don’t know they no longer have to pay unions.

Fredericks and nine other California teachers previously filed a lawsuit against the unions, and on June 27, 2018, the teachers were freed from forced unionism.

Most people don’t know they’ve been freed because unions have passed laws in many states that prohibit public employers from telling employees they’ve been freed from the union.

“They may harass you, they may bully you, but we have to be brave and stand up to these evil people who are really harming our children and our freedoms,” he said. are.”

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