Kansas City is the only school district in Missouri that reported using a curriculum that both teaches lessons about critical race theory and includes the 1619 Project, a recent survey found. Two other districts reported that they use the 1619 Project in their curriculum.
The admission by the school district contradicts The Kansas City Star which wrongly reported in May that no schools in Missouri taught CRT.
The results of the survey, administered by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, come a week after several parents and teachers opposed to controversial critical race theory decried its teaching in schools before a committee of lawmakers. The state’s commissioner of education said the academic concept is largely not taught throughout K-12 public schools in Missouri.
Over the course of two weeks from July 12-23, DESE asked school districts two questions: whether their board-approved curriculum includes lessons about critical race theory and whether it used the 1619 Project. In total, 425 responses were received, with nearly all schools answering “no.” A spokeswoman for DESE did not respond to a request for comment on the survey’s findings or how the department plans to use the results.
Kansas City Public Schools, which was the only district to answer yes to both questions, said the district offers an African-Centered College Preparatory Academy, a magnet school for elementary and secondary students. The school board also recently approved a $5,000 1619 Education Project grant that aimed to help two teachers implement the project’s lesson plans in summer school.
The Kansas City district is the 12th largest in the state behind Springfield, St. Louis, Lee’s Summit, Columbia and others.
The debate over critical race theory has dominated local school board meetings in Missouri in recent months and often enters the debate on how districts teach diversity in the classroom. The Show-Me Institute, a conservative think tank, has filed a series of open records requests with districts across the state to determine if critical race theory is taught within them.
Across the nation, thousands of parent groups are organizing in opposition of both CRT and the 1619 Project. Historians recently signed a letter criticizing both.
During a Joint Committee on Education hearing last week, opponents called it “psychological abuse of our children funded by taxpayers.”
– Alan Goforth | Metro Voice