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Undercover video shows school admins saying they changed language to avoid anti-CRT law


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An undercover video investigation discovered school administrators in Iowa admitting they have been adjusting language to evade a state law that prohibits the teaching of certain controversial theories.

The investigation is part of a larger effort by Accuracy in Media (AIM), a conservative-leaning nonprofit media watchdog group, to shed light on instances of school officials bucking state laws targeting critical race theory and similar topics.

The latest exposé includes video footage of Iowa administrators admitting on hidden camera that “politicians really can’t stop” them from teaching students CRT principles.

“These administrators in Iowa are incredibly brazen and incredibly devoted to making sure that your children learn the racist, Marxist tenets of Critical Race Theory,” AIM President Adam Guillette says in the nonprofit’s latest video exposing school officials. “Of course, they don’t want to call it Critical Race Theory. They don’t even want to call it Social and Emotional Learning anymore. They’ve simply just changed the label and kept the same content in an effort to make sure that parents don’t know what their children are learning.

In Iowa, Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds signed legislation into law last year banning the instruction of any “race or sex stereotyping,” as well as “race or sex scapegoating,” in schools. The law defines such “stereotyping” as assigning “character traits, values, moral and ethical codes, privileges, status or beliefs to a race or sex,” or to an individual on the basis of their race or sex.

It outlines scapegoating as “assigning fault, blame or bias” to individuals of a particular race or sex because of such immutable traits, adding that “claiming that, consciously or unconsciously,” that any race is inherently racist or inherently inclined to oppress others is also a violation.

In AIM’s latest video, an undercover reporter points this out to Urbandale Community School District Coordinator of Equity & Inclusion Ryan Williamson, who then acknowledges the legislation, House File 802, prohibits CRT instruction.

“Has it done anything? Has it affected you guys?” the reporter asks.

“No, no. It hasn’t. It really hasn’t affected us at all,” Williamson touts. "Have we had to shift our language? Absolutely.”

In another scene, Waukee Community School District Director of Student Equity Dr. Lindsay Law said the district had adopted teaching initiatives for grades K-5 “in social justice standards” and “social-emotional learning.”

Law said her district has been “careful around the wording” used in its curriculum.

Like 'supremacy,' things like that or anything that says white anything in it," she says on camera. "We try to say things like 'difference in identity,' like there's just – you just – it's kind of watered down for now. But then, I think, kids make the connection, and they can go find their own resources.

West Des Moines Community Schools’ Executive Director of Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Dr. Anthony Ferguson also said on-camera that Iowa’s anti-CRT bill “does not change the curriculum at all,” adding that he’s “proud” of the fact his district’s curriculum development team has been able to implement an “equity tool” into “every sort of literature” the district uses, including material for subjects such as math.

“Critical Race Theory is about labels and stereotypes, not education,” remarked Governor Reynolds, according to the Des Moines Register. “It teaches kids that we should judge others based on race, gender or sexual identity, rather than the content of someone’s character,” Reynolds said in a statement.

Critics argue the law itself does not prohibit school officials or curriculums from promoting racial, cultural, ethnic or intellectual diversity of inclusiveness.

The National Desk reached out to the districts featured in the Accuracy in Media video, but did not receive any responses.

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