Fight Against School Equity Agenda And De-Leveling “Being Won on the Ground by the Parents” In Barrington, Rhode Island
“A student doing well in a subject doesn’t take away from another student, but it’s this ideology of diversity, equity and inclusion”
The “equity” and “de-leveling” controversy in Barrington, Rhode Island, is continuing to reverberate. We covered it in Parents Revolt Against “Equity” Agenda In Barrington (RI) As School District Drops Precipitously In National Rankings:
Barrington, Rhode Island, where Legal Insurrection Foundation is based, is the center of a firestorm of parent protest over an “equity” agenda scaling back or eliminating accelerated high school courses. This so-called “de-leveling” has united parents of all political affiliations in a parents movement that is gaining steam with calls to replace town political and school leadership.
Coverage by Fox News went viral, Rhode Island parents enraged at school board for removing honors classes in ‘equity obsession’. I was quoted in the story:
Bill Jacobson, a long-time Barrington resident and founder of Legal Insurrection, said, “De-leveling is part of an agenda of equalizing outcomes. This equal-results approach stems from critical race theory and diversity, equity and inclusion, which posit that unequal outcomes are the result of systemic bias and discrimination. ‘Equity’ in particular is the codeword for bringing high achievers down to equalize outcomes,” Jacobson said. “‘Equity’ has become an unhealthy obsession, and parents are seeing the impact.”
Barrington mother Ellen Schaffer was featured in our prior post, and was interviewed today on Fox & Friends First:
Parents of Barrington, Rhode Island schoolchildren are expressing their outrage after the school district decided to eliminate honors courses under a new “equity and inclusion” agenda.
Ellen Schaffer, a mother outraged by the rationale, slammed the school district Wednesday for its attempt to create a melting pot of students of all abilities, telling “Fox & Friends First” host Todd Piro that students need a more “tailored” approach to reach their full potential.
“What we’re being told is that there are children who are not getting access to rigorous academics with the same access as children who are in honors levels,” she said.
“That’s the rationale, but how it happens really doesn’t turn out that way,” she added.
Piro asked why “woke” education systems insist on bringing down students who are in honors classes instead of helping students who are struggling.
“It’s hard for a lot of parents to accept that there’s maybe something greater at play that isn’t just what we can take at face value,” she responded, adding, “Really, if we want to work in the name of equity, we need to focus on equal opportunity…”
I also was interviewed by Bill Hemmer on America’s Newsroom:
Bill Jacobson, founder of the nonprofit group Legal Insurrection, said Wednesday the schools in Barrington, Rhode Island are trying to eliminate “distinctions” where students can excel academically and achieve high honors.
On “America’s Newsroom,” Jacobson explained why high-performing schools in the community where he lives are moving to eliminate honors courses.
“A student doing well in a subject doesn’t take away from another student. It’s this ideology of diversity, equity, and inclusion. This is the equity portion of it, which means everybody has to be equal. But parents don’t want that. What they want is equal opportunity for their children, but allow the gifted children to excel. So it’s really infuriated the community,” he said….
Jacobson said consultants are trying to “fix something that wasn’t broken” which as a result has parents outraged.
“We were doing quite well out of over 10,000 school districts in the country. We were ranked up until two or three years ago, 189th, which is astounding.”
As a result of the schools aiming for equity, Jacobson said the schools have started to suffer academically, now ranked in the 300s.
“There were these theories based on equity, based on everybody having to be equal, no one being allowed to excel, no one being made to feel bad if they don’t excel, that we’re like guinea pigs and people don’t want that in the community and they are rising up against it.”
“I think it’s something that can be won, but it’s being won on the ground by the parents who have kids in the school system right now. And what’s remarkable is that it is across party lines. Over 500 parents signed an open letter, protesting this and stating we are Democrats, Republicans and Independents — and independents are about half of the voters in the town. So it can be won because now the parents have awakened to this woke agenda and de-leveling is just code word for it’s often called equity. It’s called other things, but it’s trying to prevent anyone from excelling because it might make others who don’t excel academically, feel bad, but we know that’s not true. It’s always been a source of pride in this town that our math team does so well that our students do so well. A student doing well in a subject doesn’t take away from another student, but it’s this ideology of diversity, equity and inclusion. And this is the equity portion of it, which means everybody has to be equal, but parents don’t want that. What they want is equal opportunity for their children, but allow the gifted children to excel. So it’s really infuriated the community.”
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