Tony Kinnett, an Indianapolis-based educator who went viral on social media for exposing how critical race theory (CRT) is being implemented in his school district, said that he has been fired.
In a Twitter thread, the award-winning science coach reported that he no longer works with Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS), Indiana’s largest school district serving about 23,000 students. According to Kinnett, IPS fired him for a host of reasons, mostly relating to information he leaked to journalists about the district’s social and racial justice initiatives.
One of the two journalists mentioned in the thread is Daily Caller’s Kendall Tietz, with whom Kinnett shared a video recording of an online session of “Racial Justice Speaker Series” at an IPS middle school. The video featured IPS Racial Equity Director Patricia Payne, who told students that they “live in a racially constructed society” where black people “internalize racism.”
“When you internalize racism, you start thinking that you are less than, just like everybody else does,” Payne said in the video. “I won’t say everybody, but way too many people think that just because you have black skin you must be dumber, you don’t care about education, and all of these different negative stereotypes.”
In another video Kinnett shared to Tietz, a group of four female Black Lives Matter activists lectured students at an IPS elementary-middle school about “white supremacy and capitalism.” One of the women said the criminal justice system is designed in a way that “black, brown, or poor” people are “more likely to be jailed for these things, to be enslaved, imprisoned, for these things that a lot of people do.”
Kinnett said another reason he was fired is that he allegedly “impaired efficiency and effectiveness” within his department and across the district. Kinnett previously reported that IPS required him to work from home because staff developed “clinical anxiety” over working with him. The district eventually revoked his access to school grounds.
“Yes, I suppose whistleblowing the actions of IPS would impair their ability to lie to parents about it,” he wrote.
A long-time critic of progressive activism in K–12 education, Kinnett recently gained widespread attention after he pushed back against the narrative that CRT isn’t being taught in schools, urging concerned parents to “keep looking” for its presence.
“When we tell you that our schools aren’t teaching critical race theory, that it’s nowhere in our standards, that’s misdirection,” Kinnett said in a Nov. 4 video on Twitter. The video, which he posted alongside internal IPS files about CRT training, has been shared over 6,500 times since then.
“I’m in dozens of classrooms a week, so I see exactly what we’re teaching our students,” he said, noting that while the schools “don’t have the quotes and theories as state standards,” the teachers are incorporating the concepts of CRT into their teaching of a variety of subjects, such as math, history, science, English, and the arts.
Kinnett’s whistleblowing comes amid a heated debate over the influence of CRT in American schools. An outgrowth of Marxism, CRT interprets society through a Marxist dichotomy between “oppressors” and “oppressed,” but replacing the class categories with racial identity groups. Proponents of CRT see deeply embedded racism in all aspects of American society, including in neutral systems such as constitutional law and standardized tests, and deem it to be the root cause of “racial inequity,” or different outcomes for different races.
In response to The Epoch Times’ request for comments, an IPS spokesperson said the district does not discuss personal matters.