Politically extreme school board members are waging an anti-education campaign against civil rights and equality in education in Temecula, California, and People For the American Way’s Grandparents For Truth campaign is on the ground helping One Temecula Valley PAC recall them.
In addition to firing a well-respected and award-winning superintendent and hiring a consultant to teach teachers how to avoid teaching Critical Race Theory (which wasn’t being taught in the schools in the first place), these school board members have denied Temecula students access to social studies textbooks simply because they contain references to LGBTQ icon Harvey Milk. The references to Milk weren’t even in the main curriculum but rather in optional, supplementary materials.
These school board members took issue with representation of an LGBTQ individual and saw an opportunity to push their agenda on the entire school district, denying parents the right to have a say in their children’s education and students the right to a robust and truthful curriculum. But Temecula students deserve better. Even California Governor Gavin Newson weighed in, promising to send textbooks to the district if the school board didn’t act.
People For started Grandparents For Truth to stand up against such authoritarian efforts to deny students comprehensive education, and to defend the teaching of truth against such extremist attacks. Removing materials because they include representation of LGBTQ individuals or other marginalized groups, and treating a local school board like a soap box from which to push a political agenda, have no place in a society committed to serving and educating its young people. Whether it’s national groups like Moms for Liberty or local school board members, banning books, denying truth, and using schools to push political agendas are inherently un-American, and we will fight back.
The event in Temecula will kick off door-knocking campaigns and signature-gathering events throughout the next weeks as outraged parents and grandparents, civil rights activists, and community leaders band together to oppose the bad school governance playing out in Temecula and to demand the recall of extremist school board members. In a time of increased discriminatory book bans, censorship, and other barriers to education spreading across the country, often fueled by politically-motivated groups and individuals, we can’t allow attacks on education to go unanswered.