While the majority of the media coverage of the 2022 midterm elections last week has surrounded the drama over which party will control the U.S. House and Senate next year, a series of small but impactful victories took place around the country for candidates seeking to further parental rights in the public school system.
There is no doubt that the issue of parental rights was one of the most culturally pertinent in the months heading into the midterms, with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis — who handily won a second term on Tuesday — drawing national attention to the issue with his controversial Parental Rights in Education Act earlier this year.
Democrat candidates, however, belong to a party that is strongly supported by the politically powerful teachers’ unions that back controversial curricula and policies that many parents object to, like sexuality education and transgender bathroom policies.
A number of candidates that DeSantis backed in Florida as well as similar-minded candidates around the country enjoyed formidable election success on Tuesday, The Epoch Times reports.
Moms for Liberty, a nonpartisan group founded to support school board candidates who vow to defend parental rights, told the Times that several of the candidates they endorsed won elections in Democrat strongholds.
Out of the 270 candidates the group backed across the country, over 50% won their elections — which is no small feat considering the National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) funneled $59 million to left-wing school board candidates.
“What you’re seeing now is parents stepping up in their local communities and taking back their education system,” the group’s president Tiffany Justice told the Times. “We’re a nonpartisan organization. We want people that support parental rights to win.”
“There is no place in public schools for woke ideology,” said incumbent school board member Jacqueline Rosario, who was backed by DeSantis. “We need to remain or come back to traditional reading, writing, arithmetic, and science. These are the subjects that we are responsible for teaching.”
“It’s just not good … We need to do better,” she added.
One parental rights advocate notes that the COVID-19 pandemic shifted discussions surrounding education thanks to the increased exposure parents were afforded to what their children were learning.
“When kids were home during COVID, a lot of parents saw what they were being taught,” Courage is a Habit president Alvin Lui told The Epoch Times. “It was the first time that parents got a peek into the classroom.”
Issues like pornographic books in school libraries, explicit, age-inappropriate lessons on sex and sexual identities, and critical race theory have electrified parents who have been shocked to learn how deeply embedded certain ideologies are within the school system, unbeknownst to many.
Meanwhile, after an open letter from the National Association of School Boards calling on President Joe Biden’s Department of Justice to investigate activists protesting school boards that have enabled “woke” ideology in schools, Attorney General Merrick Garland directed the FBI to probe such parents as domestic terrorists.
This has done little to assuage the indignity of parents who want more control over what their children are being taught and exposed to in school, however.
“Parents are involved and want to reclaim public education,” Justice said. “The people in control of education continue to sell snake oil solutions, like DEI and CRT and SEL [Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Critical Race Theory, and Social and Emotional Learning] instead of focusing on the real issue at hand, which is kids are not learning to read in school.”
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