Last night’s Board of Education meeting in Greenwich was the most well-attended meeting in the last two years, and by a large margin.
The evening started off with competing rallies outside Central Middle School.
The “Show the Love” rally jointly organized by Indivisible and Greenwich Voices for Democracy drew less than 30 supporters who brought no more than 10 signs with messages that included: “Politicians Make Crappy Teachers. Keep the GOP Out of Our Schools.” and “If you don’t like GPS, then Homeschool.” and “Don’t Flori-duh Greenwich."
This group felt parents should not have a role in picking or choosing what their children learn, despite the fact that BOE Policy 1110.1 clearly states, "all parents, guardians, and caregivers of students enrolled in our school district are encouraged to take an active role in the education of their children.” The policy further says that the BOE should "provide opportunities for parents, guardians, and caregivers to have a voice in the planning and decision-making at both the school and district level.”
Of course, the “Show the Love" parents seemed to take no issue with the allegations of “subtle indoctrination” of children so that they become Democrat voters by the time they graduate. Perhaps that’s why instead of asking for “politics-free schools” one sign at the rally said to keep the GOP out. They are likely content knowing that the Democrat party is already freely operating inside schools.
Meanwhile, the “Education Not Indoctrination” rally drew five times more parents, and even featured a surprise visit from Turning Point USA. At least 40 of the parents held signs that featured slogans focused on teaching academics, not political ideology. Posters with examples of inappropriate curriculum lined the sidewalk and an iPad played the bombshell Project Veritas video. One parent commented on the irony that this group was called “small and fringe” given how much bigger and better organized it was than the “Show the Love” group.
Perhaps not surprisingly, News 12 carefully edited the footage so you couldn’t see the striking difference in the number of parents at the competing rallies.
Nonetheless, the majority of parents who offered comments talked about the allegations from the Project Veritas video, the fact that the BOE is in violation of its own policies and procedures, and how unapproved curriculum has been implemented. Many parents echoed the demands spelled out in the letter from 67 Republicans. One parent talked about how dark and depressing the curriculum has become, and noted a corresponding rise in teens committing suicide. Another mentioned how the school has deliberately side-stepped the approval process for controversial content by accepting this content as “gifts" from third parties.
Which brings us to the eye-opening comments from the PTA Council's (“PTAC's”) DEI team which suggested that DEI materials would be provided to the district “thanks” to funding from PTAC… implying that PTAC would sidestep the curriculum approval process by gifting DEI materials to the school. And further proving the point previously made about side-stepping the proper approval process.
One speaker denied the presence of CRT despite the fact that FOIA results confirmed that administrators received White Fragility training, and confirmed that white privilege has been included in the high school sociology curriculum guide since 2014. Then there’s the black and latino studies course that has a couple units on CRT-related units.
The same speaker slandered parents from the “Education Not Indoctrination” side as “terrorists” and told the Board, “do not listen to the noise”. Other speakers from the “Show the Love” side also engaged in name-calling because when you have no substance off which to base your argument, name-calling is all that’s left.
Perhaps one of the highlights of the night was when Carl Higbie pointed out how Superintendent Jones, “messed up so royally that you have deemed the town necessary to send a dozen cop cars and 20 cops to a Board of Education meeting.” He also revealed that Jones makes as much money as the President of the US. He rightfully pointed out that the problem is not with the teachers, but rather with administrators and the Board of Education who fail to follow their own policies, procedures and even Connecticut education law.
In fact, every single speaker last night spoke in support of teachers.
Though the same could not be said of the Superintendent or the Deputy Superintendent, whom many believe should be placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an independent investigation into all of the allegations made in the video. Additionally, parents called for the immediate removal of all unapproved curriculum, including controversial social emotional learning programs like RULER, which were never approved by the Board.
These seem like reasonable steps to take, especially given the seriousness of the accusations and the troubling pattern of scandals in the district.
P.S. Did you happen to catch the comment near the end of the meeting about Board member Cody Kittle thinking that the upcoming CABE/CAPSS convention was “propaganda”? He just might be onto something...