Williamson County School Board Members Dodge Questions About Whether They Gave the OK to ‘White Privilege’ Training

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By Tennessee law, members of the Williamson County School Board must adopt the In-Service training for teachers before Superintendent Mike Looney files it with the Tennessee Department of Education.

Again, it’s state law.

The Tennessee Department of Education’s (TDOE) website says so.

Here is exactly what Tennessee Code Annotated Section 49-6-3004, which is displayed verbatim on the TDOE website says:

In-service days shall be used according to a plan recommended by the local superintendent of schools in accordance with the provisions of this section and other applicable statutes, and adopted by the local board of education. A copy of this plan shall be filed with the State Commissioner of Education on or before June 1 the preceding school year and approved by him. (emphasis added)

So, did the Williamson County School Board approve an In-service teacher training curriculum that preached, among other things, “white privilege” leftist social justice causes, and America’s supposed dysfunctional history?

County school board members did not respond to The Tennessee Star’s request for comment, despite having more than two days to do so.

Only one school board member, Brad Fiscus, responded to The Star, via email.

His response, however brief:

“I joined the board in August 2018,” Fiscus said, in an emailed response.

And that was all he wrote.

Here are the questions The Star posed to the school board members that remain unanswered:

• Did the Williamson County School Board, acting as a whole, review and approve the establishment of a cultural competency committee by WCS superintendent Mike Looney in January 2018?

• If so, what was the date of the board meeting where the Williamson County School Board voted to approve the establishment of a cultural competency committee by WCS Superintendent Mike Looney and can you forward a copy of the minutes of that meeting to us?

• Who selected and approved the members of the WCS Cultural Competency Committee, and what was the criteria for their inclusion?

• Did the Williamson County School Board, acting as a whole, review and approve the creation of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series?

• If so, what was the date of the board meeting where the Williamson County School Board voted to approve the creation of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series and can you forward a copy of the minutes of that meeting to us?

• Did the Williamson County School Board, acting as a whole, approve the system-wide launch and implementation of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series during the academic year 2018-2019, beginning in August 2018, for in-service training of WCS teachers and staff?

• If so, what was the date of the board meeting where the Williamson County School Board voted to approve the system-wide launch and implementation of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series during the academic year 2018-2019, beginning in August 2018, for in-service training of WCS teachers and staff and can you forward a copy of the minutes of that meeting to us?

• At any time prior to the system-wide launch of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series in August 2018 did WCS superintendent Mike Looney represent to you individually, or to the Williamson County School Board as a whole, that the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series had been approved for in-service training system-wide in WCS by former Tennessee Commissioner of Education Candace McQueen?

• If so, is that representation captured in the minutes of any board meeting and can you forward us a copy of the minutes of that board meeting?

• At any time prior to the system-wide launch of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series in August 2018 did WCS superintendent Mike Looney present to you a document showing that former Tennessee Commissioner of Education Candace McQueen approved the Williamson County Cultural Competency Series for system-wide implementation in the academic year 2018 to 2019?

• Have you personally reviewed–in their entirety– any or all of the four videos (Module 1, Module 2, Module 3, and Module 4) that comprise the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency series?

• If so, on what date did you first review one of those videos?

• If you have reviewed any or all of the four videos that comprise the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency Series can you explain why they are not inconsistent with Governor Bill Lee’s statement during his March 4 State of the State address that all Tennessee children attending public schools will be taught “unapologetic American exceptionalism”?

‘Cultural Competency’ Videos

As The Star reported last week, in Modules No. 1 and No. 2 of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency video series, teachers are told the term “illegal alien” is “oppressive.”

But that’s just one example among many of a leftist, politically correct narrative that school system officials try to drill into their teachers through these videos.

Another supposed nugget of wisdom the narrator passes down:

“Using coded language like ‘ghetto,’ ‘thug,’ or even ‘helicopter parents’ can fuel biased behavior and unintentionally reinforce stereotypes,” the narrator of the video said.

Also, as reported, Module No. 3 tried to indoctrinate teachers on how to teach students about “white privilege.”

The In-service training video, this one 26 minutes, profiled several people whom the video described as “Williamson County Voices.”

The video did not identify anyone, nor did it make clear if these people are school system employees or county residents not formally affiliated with the school system. One man, though, identified himself as a school administrator.

Later, the narrator told viewers “that white individuals do enjoy unearned advantages that society does not necessarily offer to individuals of color.”

Also, as The Star reported, Williamson County officials had the ultimate power to approve an In-service “white privilege” training curriculum for their teachers last month, said Chandler Hooper, a spokeswoman for the Tennessee Department of Education.

But that’s inconsistent with the TDOE’s standards and practices on In-service teacher training, as specified on that department’s website.

Tennessee’s education commissioner, according to the rules, has the final say approving any In-service training plans. Local school system officials submit those plans to the education commissioner months before the start of the new school year.

– – –
Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to chrisbutlerjournalist@gmail.com.
Image “Williamson County School Board Members” by Williamson County School Board.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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9 Thoughts to “Williamson County School Board Members Dodge Questions About Whether They Gave the OK to ‘White Privilege’ Training”

  1. […] board member Candy Emerson said she had no idea she voted for such a thing as in-service teacher training that featured “white […]

  2. […] The Star reported earlier in this week, we contacted all twelve members of the Williamson County School Board, asking […]

  3. […] As The Star reported last week, in Modules No. 1 and No. 2 of the Williamson County Schools Cultural Competency video series, teachers are told the term “illegal alien” is “oppressive.” […]

  4. RLMIII

    This is why my children will be attending private school.

  5. Julie

    Shocking… Anyone in Williamson County that’s surprised by any of this is either new to the area or blind, deaf, and dumb. Conservatives have been running for office and shouting from the roof-tops that the liberal disease is an epidemic there, and the carriers are: the status quo old cronies that refuse to give up power, Williamson, Inc. (the chamber), and the Williamson Business PAC. They control that county while pretending to have values as the clueless PTOs and Stepford Wives sit and sip their Starbucks lattes. The only board member worth their salt is Candy Emerson, and I think she’s just given up…. Caveat emptor. And that’s all I’ve got to say about that, lol.

  6. Lee

    Dodge-Podge – – public office demands public answers! Answer or Good Bye!

  7. not2day

    School board transparency……..not.

  8. 83ragtop50

    The board members should just go ahead and answer the questions because these questions are not going to just go away. They can try to circle the wagons and hide but it will be futile.

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