Legislators Lecture Board of Education

Legislators took the Kansas State Board of Education to task because they don’t think the panel is taking lawmakers’ and parents’ concerns about how race and racism are discussed in schools seriously enough.

Senator Molly Baumgardner, who chairs the Senate Education Committee, told board members to direct state Department of Education staff to “get real” about how schools are applying the concept of “critical race theory,” which centers on the idea that racism is systemic in the nation’s institutions, and that they function to maintain the dominance of white people.

In July, the state school board issued a statement saying that critical race theory is not part of state academic standards.

Some parents say that skirts the issue, pointing to class reading assignments and diversity training for teachers as examples of the discussions about race that they oppose.

Board Chairman Jim Porter told the Associated Press that board members plan to discuss the issue soon.