California school wanted to cut honors classes
The idea was met with a backlash
Now the principal is backing downhttps://t.co/QJM40HoxgO
— Caliconsnews (@caliconsnews) April 25, 2022
Ironically, Patrick Henry High School’s name and iconography reference the founding father who said, “Give me liberty or give me death.” The school’s mascot is the Patriot, and its building prominently features a waving American flag.
“We are proud of the work taking place at Henry to support the district goal of decreasing stratification while increasing student access to course offerings,” said school principal, Michelle Irwin, in a leaked document.
It followed up the proposal, which included cutting all honors English and history classes, with a “rationale for changes” that specifically invoked racial language.
“Our goal is to have students from all ethnicities and socio-economic backgrounds represented in our courses,” Irwin said. “A variety of factors including access to education, adult bias, and a person’s self-generated identity contribute to the inequities we currently experience.”
A spokesman from the San Diego school district, however, said that the changes proposed by Irwin would be “paused” after the district received widespread criticism from parents about the plan, according to Fox News.
A petition at the website change.org currently has over 2,200 signatures protesting the proposed changes, with some of them are also donating money to fight the changes.
“In 2019 in New York City, a group commissioned by Mayor Bill de Blasio, The School Diversity Advisory Group, recommended doing away with all gifted and talented programs, while that same year Seattle attempted unsuccessfully to eliminate its programs as a way to alleviate school segregation,” wrote Rachel Blustain, a CRT supporter, at NBC.com.
Students themselves have protested against the changes, recognizing that the lack of advanced courses will put them at a disadvantage when they go to apply for colleges.
“I don’t see the purpose in trying to purge all these classes instead of promoting students that are in marginalized communities to prepare themselves for higher-level classes instead,” said Mena Vo, a 15-year-old sophomore who co-organized Wednesday’s student protest, according to the San Diego Union Tribune.
“I just think that people should have the opportunity to try,” added Vo.
Vo told the newspaper that she and other students were planning on rallying in front of the school district before the regular board meeting.