Fairfax school board trades resolution on ‘truthful education’ tied to critical race theory

JThe Fairfax County School Board in Virginia on Thursday dropped a resolution affirming its support for “truthful education” tied to aspects of critical race theory and instead endorsed a watered-down version that supporters said was “less conflicting”.

The board was to vote on the controversial “Truthful Education in FCPS: Support for Educators and School Administrators’ Resolve,” which promised to support teachers and district staff who “develop and implement resources and pedagogy.”

In a turn of events, a majority of the board voted to revise the resolution to omit language such as “anti-racist”, acknowledging the divisions it had caused in the community. The
resolution passed after contentious debate among members over whether the revision represented what the Fairfax County public school community needed.

“The substitution we are presenting is, I believe, more inclusive of the views of our board members and less divisive for our broader community,” board member Elaine Tholen said of of the necessity of the exchange.

School board member Ricardy Anderson, who backed the original resolution, said the new version didn’t go far enough.

“There are critical components missing from the bundled build that I just can’t support,” Anderson said. “The terms ‘truth’, ‘anti-racist’ are missing. The terms ‘equity’ and ‘justice’ are missing, and these terms appear in so much more of our work.”


The original resolution sparked controversy because of its use of terms like “anti-racist” and “equity,” which are commonly associated with critical race theory, an academic theory that says American institutions are systematically racist and oppressive toward racial minorities. To combat this oppression and racism, the theory argues, institutions must adopt “anti-racist” and “equitable” practices to eliminate racially disparate outcomes.

The board was quick to point out that the resolution is not binding and does not actually change district policy, but board member Melanie Meren told WUSA on Thursday that the resolution “signals the intent of … future policy development”.


Conservative activist parent groups criticized the board ahead of the vote. In a statement to Washington Examiner earlier this week, Parents Defending Education President Nicki Neily said the school district is “doubled down on activism” and noted that “schools seek equity at the expense of excellence.”

The new “inclusive curriculum and instruction” resolution adopted on Thursday pledges a commitment to “a more inclusive curriculum related to racism, prejudice, intolerance and injustice”.

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