California Teachers Association’s ‘Curriculum’ of Shame

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California Teachers Association’s ‘Curriculum’ of Shame

Los Angeles public school support staff, teachers, and supporters rally outside of the school district headquarters on the first day of a three-day strike in Los Angeles on March 21, 2023. (Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images)

Rebecca Friedrichs

Rebecca Friedrichs

2/8/2024

Updated: 2/8/2024

Commentary
The California Teachers Association just made clear—again—it does not give a fig about your child’s education. Indoctrination? Oh yeah. Education? Nahhhh.
At its recent “solidarity conference” at the swanky Westin Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles, the union’s leaders paraded a list of presentations that mirrors last summer’s “new business items” at the National Education Association’s (NEA) big national convention in Florida.
In both cases, attendees were treated to ideological training but almost nothing that had anything to do with student achievement. Many of those attending probably had no need for such steerage as they were already soulmates of the racist, class-warfare, and anti-American features of the presentations.
But I can assert with authority that there were at least several real teachers in the audience who are deeply troubled by the union agenda. I know because those teachers sent me the union-prepared propaganda documents used to push the union’s radical agenda onto unsuspecting teachers attending the conference.
Most good teachers, the ones who actually care whether your child can read, write, do math and understand arts and history in a non-ideological context, stayed home. They can be glad they did, but it’s important that all of them read this column—and the union’s “solidarity conference” flyer—to gain understanding on how their so-called union is destroying our kids and schools.
At the swanky Westin Bonaventure, union members with a lot of extra time and money on their hands were treated to nearly two dozen presentations. The conference logo said “our voice, our union” and the union’s voice as usual looked a lot more like a political rally for communists than a teachers convention.
Just like at the NEA shindig in Florida, union members were regaled by slogans and euphemisms that unions dream up for radical Democratic political leaders and other Marxist voices backed by unions.
Pro-union protesters rally in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 11, 2016. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Pro-union protesters rally in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 11, 2016. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Science teachers could learn some “restorative narratives about dead white men,” and “a theory of intersection between gender, race, and STEM as an emerging ‘industrial class.’” What? Ethnic studies concentrated on “indigenous cultures across the regions of North and South America.” Presenters from Oakland shared an “insightful documentary” of the school district’s introduction of “yoga and mindfulness” classes.
Attendees learned of “the transformative potential of integrating Native Ways of Knowing into K-12 public education.” Another presenter “confronting white nationalism” said without irony she would teach union members “how to recognize exposure to extremist ideology.” Another promised to show attendees “how you can further develop your social justice activism.” And yet others promised to provide lessons on “how to amplify student engagement in integrating Ethnic Studies in any subject area including STEM and the Arts.”
One presenter fretted about racial, economic, and class polarization. Since these derelictions are pretty much the entire “pedagogy” of the leftists now running the government education system, you must wonder, wherever do people get these ideas? The answer: unions.
Want a new acronym? “Adult learners” at another presentation got a dose of how to “reflect upon critical dialogue” to help new teachers better treat (here’s the new acronym) LGBTQIA2-S+ students. A bit ominously, the presenter said, “As teacher educators/coaches/and mentors, we are uniquely positioned in shaping beginning teachers.” Bad syntax aside, you can see the union doesn’t restrict its indoctrinations to students; it has a big role to play with new teachers, too.
Cecily Myart-Cruz, the firebrand leftist who heads United Teachers Los Angeles, promised a session to provide teachers with ways to take actions in the classroom, school site and community to promote “racial justice movements.”
Los Angeles public school support staff, teachers, and supporters rally outside of the school district headquarters on the first day of a three-day strike in Los Angeles on March 21, 2023. (Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images)

Los Angeles public school support staff, teachers, and supporters rally outside of the school district headquarters on the first day of a three-day strike in Los Angeles on March 21, 2023. (Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images)

Ms. Myart-Cruz worked to keep Los Angeles schools closed when everyone else in the country was reopening after the pandemic lockdowns, apparently unaware that many of the youngsters hurt the most by lengthy closures were black. But here she was, back before the adoring union crowd, explaining that “Black lives do in fact matter.”
On and on it went, a smorgasbord of political statements, slogans, and distorted or misleading assertions to keep the crowd fired up.
But as a teacher who graded thousands of papers over 28 years in the classroom, I’d like to report that the written blurbs announcing these presentations were rife with spelling, syntactical, and grammatical errors.
Red marks all around!
Here’s just one of many samples: “What can we do to protect our BIPOC students in getting a life sentence of special education eligible?” This word salad is typical of the so-called teachers unions who pretend to represent real teachers while destroying everything we love.
The so-called teachers unions just don’t care that children—the people they’re ostensibly there to help—are not mastering the basics. They’re more focused on political matters best left out of schools. That’s why I hope all good teachers will abandon the so-called unions in defense of our profession, our kids, and our country.
Rebecca Friedrichs

Rebecca Friedrichs

Author

Rebecca Friedrichs is the founder of For Kids and Country, the author of “Standing Up to Goliath: Battling State and National Teachers’ Unions for the Heart and Soul of Our Kids and Country,” and a 28-year public school teacher who was lead plaintiff in Friedrichs v. CTA.

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