YORBA LINDA, Calif.—Critical Race Theory (CRT) is now banned in the Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified District following a school board vote on April 5.
The 3–2 vote Tuesday evening came following months of discussion over the theory, which divides society into oppressors and oppressed based on race.
Trustee Leandra Blades, who has been advocating for the ban, applauded the vote that she believes will ensure that history on race will be kept strictly to the textbook rather than political ideologies.
“Things in California can change if they begin at a local level which is why we need local control,” Blades told The Epoch Times.
Hundreds of people showed up to the board meeting to hear the final decision with about 50 public speakers giving their opinion, Blades said.
Some public commenters argued that banning CRT prevents the ability of teaching about topics of history such as slavery or school segregation.
However, Blades refuted these accusations, clarifying that the topics would still be taught, but without a political narrative and the teachers’ ability to state their opinion.
The school board is one of the few to ban CRT, Blades said, adding that she believes more districts will follow.
The two board members that voted against the ban on Tuesday—President Carrie Buck and Trustee Karin Freeman—argued against the ban on CRT, claiming that it was “censorship.”
“This resolution is politically driven and it serves to ban and censor,” Buck claimed. “Curriculum development belongs in the hands of our educators.”
Buck further stated that the ban was not wanted by a majority of students, parents, and teachers she has communicated with, and insisted those in favor of the ban weren’t listening to everyone.
She cited a list of people that was circulating since the ban was in discussion that counted more than 700 people against the ban and 140 in favor of it.
However, Blades contested the list from Buck while citing a study conducted by the Orange County Board of Education that showed 75 percent of those within the Placentia-Yorba Linda School District believed that CRT should not be taught in schools, while 19 percent agreed it should be.
The survey also concluded that a majority of participants agree that CRT should not be a high school requirement, according to Blades.
Blades further argued against the statements that claimed CRT was not taught in public schools, claiming her own children have been taught the theory in their curriculum.
“Three of my kids have been taught CRT, and that has been in the last five years,” she said. “In 2017 and 2018, we didn’t know what Critical Race Theory was; we thought they were just teaching communism.”
Since the discussion began among the board members, Blades said she received inquiries from different school boards requesting to receive a copy of the resolution to ban CRT in hopes of proposing it.
The resolution to ban CRT went into effect immediately.