US

Oregon elementary school teacher warns colleagues they’ll be FIRED if they refused to teach CRT 

An Oregon middle school was exposed by furious parents after likening her colleagues to pedophiles and warning them they’d be fired if they refused to teach critical race theory.

Katherine Watkins, an 8th grade humanities teacher at Cedar Park Middle School in Beaverton, Portland, told colleagues during a Zoom ‘equity conference’ that if they were ‘going to keep up those old views of colonialism, it’s going to lead to being fired’.

Watkins also equated teachers who ‘do racist things’ with pedophiles, during an inflammatory statement that her colleagues were forced to listen to. 

She said: ”If you’re not evolving into an anti-racist educator you’re making yourself obsolete in this field of profession.

‘Our district is only getting browner and browner with our children and so obviously you can’t change your melanin alright? But you can change your mind, so that you can actually function in a district that is full of BIPOC (black, indigenous, people of color) children.

‘So, if you’re being resistant I understand that, but you’re going to have to eventually come to the light. 

‘Because if you’re going to keep with those old views of colonialism it’s going to lead to being fired because you’re going to be doing damage to our children, trauma.

‘And so, as we fire the teachers who sexually abuse our children, we will be firing the teachers who do racist things to our children and traumatize them.’

Watkins' social media accounts show the Black Lives Matter sign and invite people to donate to her Cash App, PayPal and Venmo accounts

Katherine Watkins, a teacher at Cedar Park Middle School in Portland, told colleagues they would be ‘fired’ if they kept up ‘old views of colonialism’. Her social media accounts, right, show the Black Lives Matter sign and invite people to donate to her Cash App, PayPal and Venmo accounts

Teachers at Cedar Park Middle School in Beaverton, Portland, above, had to attend the $5,500 'equity summit' where Watkins made her comments

Teachers at Cedar Park Middle School in Beaverton, Portland, above, had to attend the $5,500 ‘equity summit’ where Watkins made her comments

‘So as we fire the teachers who sexually abuse our children, we will be firing the teachers who do racist things to our children and traumatize them.’

Watkin made the comments on February 10 during a virtual conference of teachers in the Beaverton School District, called ‘Equity ABAR (anti-bias anti-racist) Summit: If Not You Then Who?’. 

The Beaverton school district said the summit cost $5,500 to organize, and was required for all licensed staff, and encouraged for classified staff.

A video of the private Zoom conference came to light in late April when it was leaked to YouTube by a group called Parents Defending Action (PDE).  

CRITICAL RACE THEORY: WHAT DOES IT MEAN?  

The fight over critical race theory in schools has escalated in the United States over the last year.

The theory has sparked a fierce nationwide debate in the wake of the Black Lives Matter protests around the country over the last year and the introduction of the 1619 Project.

The 1619 Project, which was published by the New York Times in 2019 to mark 400 years since the first enslaved Africans arrived on American shores, reframes American history by ‘placing the consequnces of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the center of the US narrative’.

The debate surrounding critical race theory regards concerns that some children are being indoctrinated into thinking that white people are inherently racist or sexist.

Those against critical race theory have argued it reduces people to the categories of ‘privileged’ or ‘oppressed’ based on their skin color.

Supporters, however, say the theory is vital to eliminating racism because it examines the ways in which race influence American politics, culture and the law.

A PDE spokesperson Asra Nomani told Fox News ‘equity warriors’ were laying siege to schools such as Cedar Park. 

‘Teachers and staff who self-describe as “equity warriors” harass colleagues until they submit to the new ideological indoctrination of critical race theory, the controversial philosophy that looks at all societal issues through a racial lens and pits people against each other. It’s dangerous and it’s destructive.’   

A Beaverton School District spokeswoman refused to comment when contacted by the DailyMail.com. 

But in previous comments to media Beaverton School District has both distanced itself from Watkins’ and defended her.

A social media account belonging to Watkins showed her posing under a Black Lives Matter sign with a clenched fist, and invited people to send her money via digital payment apps Cash App, PayPal and Venmo. 

It’s unclear why she was soliciting donations, or what they would go towards. 

Watkins’ Linkedin profile shows she  graduated from the University of Idaho in 1998 with a Bachelor’s degree in English. 

After working for a high schools in Yuma, Arizona, and Scappoose, Oregon she started working for the Beaverton School District in August 2004.

Watkins has also completed Master’s degrees in education and creative writing. 

Parent groups, educators and commentators blasted Watkins’ comments on social media. 

James Lindsay wrote: ‘This video is a perfect example of why we need to start taking back education from these so-called ‘anti-racist’ racists and manipulators who are abusing our kids to push their political agenda. Beaverton, OR, is out of control. Unbelievable.’

Allie Beth Stuckey said: ‘This kind of mind virus is highly contagious and deadly. The best known remedy is to get your kids out of government schools immediately.’

 

'Fun little dangerous cult we have cooking!' said Tim Dillon

‘Fun little dangerous cult we have cooking!’ said Tim Dillon

Dave Reaboi said: 'If America had 1/10 the amount of teachers, we'd be so much better off.'

Dave Reaboi said: ‘If America had 1/10 the amount of teachers, we’d be so much better off.’

James Lindsay wrote: 'This video is a perfect example of why we need to start taking back education from these so-called 'anti-racist' racists and manipulators who are abusing our kids to push their political agenda. Beaverton, OR, is out of control. Unbelievable'

James Lindsay wrote: ‘This video is a perfect example of why we need to start taking back education from these so-called ‘anti-racist’ racists and manipulators who are abusing our kids to push their political agenda. Beaverton, OR, is out of control. Unbelievable’

'This kind of mind virus is highly contagious and deadly. The best known remedy is to get your kids out of government schools immediately'

‘This kind of mind virus is highly contagious and deadly. The best known remedy is to get your kids out of government schools immediately’

'This 8th Grade teacher in Beaverton Oregon is comparing Anti Racism to Sexuality Abusing children if you are not teaching the BS Critical Race theory to kids. And America wants to know what is wrong with kids today. What is wrong you have IDIOTS teaching like'

‘This 8th Grade teacher in Beaverton Oregon is comparing Anti Racism to Sexuality Abusing children if you are not teaching the BS Critical Race theory to kids. And America wants to know what is wrong with kids today. What is wrong you have IDIOTS teaching like’

‘Fun little dangerous cult we have cooking!’ said Tim Dillon.

Greg Bates wrote: ‘This 8th Grade teacher in Beaverton Oregon is comparing Anti Racism to Sexuality Abusing children if you are not teaching the BS Critical Race theory to kids. And America wants to know what is wrong with kids today. What is wrong you have IDIOTS teaching like’. 

Dave Reaboi said: ‘If America had 1/10 the amount of teachers, we’d be so much better off.’

Another Twitter user said: ‘Katherine Watkins from Beaverton school district near Portland, Oregon is merely a symptom. The entire district is filled with these critical race theory pronoun users lead by Beaverton Superintendent Don Grotting.’

The Beaverton School District’s public communications officer Shellie Bailey-Shah defended her comments in a statement to Newsweek

‘Throughout this past year, institutions have been called upon to re-evaluate their role in the perpetuation of implicit bias and systemic racism,’ Bailey-Shah said.

‘The Beaverton School District is no exception. It’s our responsibility to identify and change inequitable practices that harm our students and staff of color,’ she said.

‘In the comments, we hear Ms. Watkins expressing her expectation that all our educators authentically engage in anti-bias, antiracist work for the benefit of our students,’ she added.

The comments appear to contradict an earlier statement the school district made to Fox News, in which a spokeswoman distanced the district from Watkins’ comments.  

‘Katherine Watkins does not speak for the Beaverton School District. All disciplinary or dismissal procedures are governed by state statute and our collective bargaining agreements with our unions, Beaverton Education Association (BEA) and Oregon School Employees Association (OSEA).’

The district confirmed that the district-wide summit was required for all licensed staff, encouraged for classified staff, and cost approximately $5,500. 

The Beaverton school district held elections in May, with candidates fiercely split down ideological lines.

Conservative challenger Jeanette Schade ran on a slogan of ‘Kids Over Politics’ and campaigned for the elimination of lesson plans on sexual orientation and gender identity, KGW8.com reported.

Schade also said she wanted to do away with critical race theory in schools, and railed against the controversial teaching method in online posts.

She received $1,000 from a group called Free Oregon founded by Ben Edtl, who said he had become horrified to learn what was being taught to his children after overhearing virtual lessons during the pandemic. 

Edtl described listening to a teacher tell children during an online art lesson to draw themselves ‘as they identify’.

‘It was in the context of “If you’re a boy, you can draw a short hair or a hat. If you’re a girl, a ponytail, or however you identify,'” he told KGW8. 

‘And I thought ‘Wow, that’s weird. They’re first graders.’

Schade was defeated in the May 18 election by liberal incumbent Susan Greenberg, who was re-elected along with three new members who are all women of color, KGW8 reported.

When asked about critical race theory last month by KGW8, a Beaverton school district spokeswoman denied t was taught in schools.

The school district does promote something called Culturally Relevant Training, which encourages teachers to know the ‘historical legacy of oppressions and its impact on learning’ of their students.

It says the qualities of ‘culturally relevant educators’ include the ‘courage to stop blaming the victims of school failure and to admit that schools are set up to replicate the disproportionate results we currently see’.

During the February 10 Zoom conference, another Beaverton school district teacher Stephanie Yelder said white educators should be as bold as the January 6 Capitol rioters in their pursuit of anti-racism ideology.

‘My lovely white people, be as bold as those idiot invaders, insurrectionists about storming that Capitol,’ Yelder says.

‘Go about this change like them. They are wacky, but you know what to do, so have that same energy.’ 

Parents Defending Education (PDE) said they had uploaded the videos to YouTube in  to bring transparency to a matter of huge public interest. 

It described ‘ABAR’ as the ‘latest buzzword for the ‘anti-bias, anti-racism’ teachings of critical race theory’.

‘It’s just a matter of time, so you either evolve or dissolve’: Katherine Watkins’ comments in full 

Katherine Watkins’ comments to a $5,500 Zoom conference titled ‘Equity ABAR Summit: If Not You Then Who?’, which Beaverton School District reportedly required its teachers to attend.

‘My pronouns are she, her, we and us.

‘I’m going to say something that’s not nice and not sweet but its true.

‘If you’re not evolving into an anti-racist educator you’re making yourself obsolete in this field of profession.

‘Our district is only getting browner and browner with our children and so obviously you can’t change your melanin alright? But you can change your mind, so that you can actually function in a district that is full of BIPOC (black, indigenous, people of color) children.

‘So, if you’re being resistant I understand that, but you’re going to have to eventually come to the light. 

‘Because if you’re going to keep with those old views of colonialism it’s going to lead to being fired because you’re going to be doing damage to our children, trauma.

‘And so, as we fire the teachers who sexually abuse our children, we will be firing the teachers who do racist things to our children and traumatize them.

‘And while our district might not be completely on there… it’s just a matter of time, so you either evolve or dissolve.’ 


Source link

Related Articles

Back to top button