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Kansas State Board of Education response to critical race theory claims

Posted: Jul 14, 2021
Author: Ann Bush

The subject of critical race theory is currently dominating media headlines and daily conversations for many. Just as we teach our Kansas students to be judicious consumers of information, we encourage all Kansans to educate themselves on what critical race theory (CRT) is and what it isn’t.

Critical race theory is an advanced and complex concept with roots extending to the 1970s and the examination of how laws and systems promote inequality. CRT is not new. It has existed with little fanfare for more than 40 years.

Unfortunately, there are some who are conflating CRT with educational equity. These concepts and practices are not interchangeable. Educational equity refers to federal and state policies and requirements for measuring achievement, fairness and opportunity in education.

Critical race theory is not a part of Kansas’ academic standards and has never been a part of Kansas’ academic standards. We encourage everyone to review these standards.

This is not the time to pull focus away from the critical task at hand of addressing the immediate needs of our students created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Now more than ever, our students and educators need the public’s focused support as they work to address unfinished learning and rebuild lost social-emotional connections.

As the Kansas State Board of Education, we fully support and affirm that our schools are a place of trusted learning. We are confident in the work of Kansas schools, local boards of education and communities to deliver the very best education for each student to be a successful citizen.

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