Conservative Republicans running for school boards in North Carolina and New York heavily lost their elections Tuesday night, the latest sign that the GOP’s effort to wage a broader LGBTQ, anti-black culture war on public schools is failing.
in North Carolina, a Slate of five right-wing thinkers Durham’s non-partisan school boards ran together in the election under the phrase “better board, better school, better future”. All were hoping to oust Democratic office-bearers. All had lost in a landslide.
These candidates included Joeta McMiller, who January 6, 2021, participated in the rebellion in Washington, DC; Curtis Hrishuk, Joe Spreading Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theories About George Soros; and Gayatri Rajaraman, who Told INdy Week That she did not think that students should learn about topics such as historical racism, gender identity or politics.
None of these five candidates received support from Durham’s three most influential political action committees. and as INDY WEEK PUT ITThis was possible because some of these people “could best be described with the letter Q followed by ‘Anon’,” a reference to the bonkers conspiracy theory about the shadow government of a Democratic pedophile at war with former President Donald Trump.
In New York, right-wing school board candidates who opposed diversity training, gender and gender education and pandemic protocols Similarly trouble on Tuesday. At least 35 of these candidates were in the capital region alone, According to Times Union, which reports primarily on Albany and its suburbs. As of late Tuesday night, 27 of them had lost and four had won, with a handful of districts still reporting results.
The Times Union reported that these races generated a “massive increase in turnout”, to which parents attributed the strong disapproval of right-wing “take our schools back” candidates.
These candidates are part of a nationwide push by conservatives to change the ideological makeup of public school boards – they claim it is necessary to keep books out of classrooms that acknowledge the existence of LGBTQ people and address historical racism. Huh. Major Republican and right-wing media have promoted the claims of these candidates. well-funded front groups such as Moms for Liberty, which is Emphasis on banning “anti-American” books Give Money to These Candidates About Martin Luther King Jr. In some cases, state legislatures led by the GOP law is passed To give right-wing school board candidates an electoral advantage over Democrats.
However, for all their efforts, conservatives continue to fail in these races. In fact, candidates in Tuesday’s elections were almost always the fewest votes in their race.
Randy Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, said, “The book ban and attempts to shut down censorship as the core issue are not working.” “What is happening is that the public education force – which includes large numbers of parents who send their children to public schools – want a safe and welcoming and high-quality environment for their children. They want that Their children have critical thinking skills. They want their children to separate fact from fiction, to be taught accurate history.”
This is a trend that has been going on for months. Earlier in May, Conservative School Board candidates across Montana very lost, Progressive School Board Candidates dropped in new hampshire In March, even in Orthodox cities. In Wisconsin, the results were mixed, but many Conservative candidates lost despite significant funding. For example, in the city of Eau Claire, All three right-wing school board candidates Those who ran on anti-LGBTQ platforms lost out to existing and their allies.
Weingarten said Tuesday’s New York election result is a good bell for how the school board race is likely to continue nationally, as these elections were held in heavily Conservative and heavily Democratic districts across the state.
“You saw the same exact results,” she said. “You saw that basically 99% of the school budget had gone up, and you saw 86% of the candidates that [New York State United Teachers] Supported, who was a candidate for public education, won. ,
“An attempt to disguise book bans and censorship as a core issue is not working.”
—Randy Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers
This is not to say that school board candidates who run on anti-diversity, anti-LGBTQ platforms always lose.
Earlier this month, all except one of 11 candidates for the Tarrant County Conservative School Board won their race in Texas. Here, candidates said they would use their board seats to prevent students from learning about racism and LGBTQ issues, which some parents in this conservative county describe as “obscene.”
And conservatives celebrated in November, when, in Virginia, their strategy to spark outrage at public schools teaching kids about critical race theory—a college-level academic discipline that’s seen as an everyday experience for people of color Examines racism and which is not taught in K-. 12 public schools helped the GOP sweep offices statewide.
But even then, children are being taught that structural racism has shaped the country’s legal and social system for centuries, cursing the idea (Which, again, was not even being taught) was not a clear winner For orthodox school board candidates.
“Notice how quiet the right wing is about these elections,” Weingarten said.
“We need parents and teachers to have a greater voice in schools,” she said. “But an anti-public school agenda is somehow being seen through disguise as ‘parents’.”