Teachers and parents in Great Britain are sounding the alarm over the importation from America of an ideology they fear will lead to segregation in British schools: Critical Race Theory (CRT).
“The ‘anti-racism’ movement started off very small and no one heard about it for a couple of years,” father of two Nick Miller told the Daily Mail. “But now they’ve upped the ante. If they start offering classes to black children only, then soon we could be looking at black-only days out, black-only lunch sittings or white children standing up in class to admit their ‘guilt.'”
Miller’s child attends the Coldfall Primary School in North London.
Earlier this month, he received a WhatsApp message from the school’s “inclusion and anti-racism group” to all Year 4 parents, inviting only the school’s “black and black-heritage” students to join two-hour Saturday morning online sessions.
“The aim is to accelerate progress in reading and writing whilst also developing the children’s knowledge of black history and culture,” the message read.
The fee for the 33-lesson course — £400 per child (aged eight or nine), or $512 each — was paid by an outside organization, according to the Daily Mail, and white children were excluded.
The outlet calls the divisive invite a “sinister development” and blames the “expanding influence” of CRT “in public life” since the 2020 murder of George Floyd at the hands of white Minneapolis police officers.
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“First developed in the 1970s by a civil rights lawyer turned Harvard law professor, Derrick Bell, Critical Race Theory is founded on the idea that racism is systemic in national institutions, and that these institutions serve to ensure white people remain dominant in society,” the Daily Mail explains. “Despite originating in America, Critical Race Theory has found increasing influence in Britain thanks to political-activist groups.”
As a result of Floyd’s death and the ensuing BLM riots, the outlet states, “an increasing number of British schools — as well as companies, public bodies, universities and other organizations — are now adopting ‘anti-racist’ policies, many influenced by Critical Race Theory.”
According to a recent paper from the campaign group Don’t Divide Us, 48 out of 49 of the teaching materials provided to them by third-party organizations promoted CRT “as fact.”
“In turn, these bodies were listed as working with some 135 schools across the country — but the tenets of Critical Race Theory are gaining wider influence across the schools network,” the Daily Mail reports.
As the U.K.’s self-described “common-sense voice on race,” Don’t Divide Us has said, “We reject the proposition that the UK is inherently racist… with racial prejudice embedded into our educational, cultural and legal institutions.”
“Where racism exists, it should be unapologetically challenged,” the group stressed. “We oppose those ideologues who seek to irrevocably damage our society by hijacking this important cause.”
The group’s co-founder, Dr Alka Sehgal Cuthbert, told the Daily Mail, that the influence of those groups that are pushing CRT “now extends way beyond the individual schools they are working with — to the point that they are now reshaping education from the top down.”
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“If you’ve got everyone from the Department for Education to exam boards, teaching unions and local authorities, all endorsing this Critical Race Theory-inspired narrative,” Dr. Sehgal Cuthbert said, “then the teaching profession is being reshaped.”
Presenting CRT as fact to children, she said, is problematic.
“There’s no discussion around these concepts. It’s basically just: ‘You will believe this or you’re a racist,'” she stated. “These groups are, for instance, asserting that ‘color-blind’ approaches have failed, although I can’t see where the evidence is for that. Color-blind approaches have got us from slavery and colonialism to today.”
“So a set of highly partisan political beliefs are being introduced from primary ages, if not nursery ages, in schools that are meant to be helping children develop their faculties to become independent thinkers,” she added.
One London parent told the Daily Mail that her child was given schoolwork teaching “that the UK is a systemically racist country and that the white children were all privileged because of the color of their skin.”
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“It went on to detail what I have since learnt is Critical Race Theory,” the parent said, “before saying it was the responsibility of ‘those with white privilege,’ as they call the children, to make amends.”
British teachers are also battling the rise in CRT’s popularity in the staff room.
Dr. Sehgal Cuthbert was informed by a headteacher that he had been told by a parent to exclude the classic John Steinback novel, “Of Mice and Men,” from the lessons because of its use of “racial language.”
The father explained he was a victim of racism in London in the 1980s.
“What a shame the father couldn’t get past his memory of being hurt to understand this is a great book,” Dr Sehgal Cuthbert said. “Very few teachers are going to teach a book like that without having a discussion about the language and what it might mean. In a way, it is the perfect opportunity to discuss racism.”
“I just feel that we’re going to be completely overwhelmed by this trend,” Miller said. “As a society we are one of the least racist places on earth. People come to this country, knowing that they’re not going to be treated badly just because of the way they look.”
“We’re not bad people,” the frustrated father said, “yet we are being crushed by this.”
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