Our schools have been in a slow and steady transition from providing world class education to our children to bringing down the standards of learning, while promoting political ideology and special interest group agendas. Our school boards have become activist boards, doing what they CAN do instead of what they SHOULD do. They should educate our children in Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, Science, History (yes, REAL History) and the Arts, while keeping our children safe while in their care.

It is time to step out from behind your keyboard, off the sidelines and into the fight to reclaim your school.

Get smart. Get together. Get Organized. Get Involved!

Below, you will find resources from A-Z that will help you to get started.

“It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that things are difficult.” — Seneca

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Getting Your Message Out

How to Write a Press Release

It is important to create public awareness for your issue, protest or event. The way you get journalists to cover your story is by writing and distributing a press release to local and national media outlets. A standard press release is about 600 words or less and focuses on the who, what, where, when and why of your story.  Writing a press release in a story form, makes a journalist’s job much easier and makes it more likely to be covered. Your story can include quotes from those at the center of your story, as well as hyperlinks to supporting documents, your website or past articles.  

Call your local news outlets or look online for journalists email address. Send your press release to journalists, as well as editors and show bookers individually via email.  To promote your story through social media by posting your press release and tagging key journalists. Send the press release to journalists and editors individually via email, post screenshots of your press release on your social media accounts and online groups. 

Here is how to get started:

Headline: Create a short, but catchy title that includes the name of your organization and succinctly describes what the press release is about. Example: Loudoun County group to stage a “Shoe Drop” protest to symbolize the mass exodus of students from Loudoun County Public Schools

Contact: This tells reporters who to get in touch with and how. Include the phone number and email address of your organization’s media contact person. 

City and State: This is where the readers see the location of where the news is happening. 

Lead: This is where you keep or lose your reader. In a single paragraph that is not more than 50 words, explain what is happening clearly and concisely. Next, you must tell them who the story is about. Tell them who is involved: you! Example: Ashburn, Virginia, December 13, 2021:  Citizens for Freedom, a parent advocacy group fighting for Parental Rights and Medical Freedom, is staging a massive “Shoe Drop” as a silent protest to the Loudoun County Public School Board and Administration on Monday, December 13, at 7am, at the Loudoun County Public School Administrative Offices at 21000 Education Court in Ashburn, VA.    

Body: Write the details about the who, what, when, where and how of your story in no more than 500 words. People rarely read the whole story, so be sure to keep the most important details at the top. Add hyperlinks to previous stories, your organization’s website or to other supporting documents. 

Take note of how the Lead paragraph explains who the article is about: Citizens for Freedom, a parent advocacy group fighting for Parental Rights and Medical Freedom… Further explain the “who”.

Add quotes from the people at the center of what is happening in order to support your news story. For Example: ​​Jane Doe, Citizens for Freedom member and one of the organizers of the protest said, “We are doing all we can to be heard by the school board, but their belief that parents do not have a primary role in the education of our children, is blocking them from truly listening.”

End: End your press release with ### centered in the middle of the page at the bottom of the text. This symbolizes the end of the press release. 


  • FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Include this phrase)
  • HEADLINE (15 words or less)
    • Name and Organization of Press Contact:
    • Phone:
    • Email:
  • DATE
  • LEAD (50 words or less)
    • CITY, STATE — then 50 words or less 
  • BODY (500 words or less)
    • First Paragraph
      • Quote
      • About the organization or group
    • Second Paragraph
    • Third Paragraph
      • Second Quote
    • Closing Paragraph
  • BOILERPLATE about the organization (50 words or less)


The term “op-ed” stands for Opinion Editorial. It is usually written by a guest columnist and not a regular journalist at the publication in which it is placed. It is used as a place where a guest columnist Normally, an Op-ed piece will live  “opposite” the “editorial” page within the publication. 

Op-eds should be kept to between 750 and 800 words. Different publishers allow for different lengths, so it is important to check the guidelines before writing.You should not submit a longer piece, but there is more flexibility for length with the online version than the printed publication. 

The op-ed pages are coveted spaces where one’s thoughts are able to be seen by masses and they provide you with the opportunity to share your perspective in a way that is convincing, unique and engaging.

Op-eds are usually written by those who consider themselves as experts in an area and who want to influence others with their experience and or knowledge. Make sure that you establish your credibility and expertise early on in your piece.  It’s important to establish your credibility and expertise. If you are deeply rooted in the issues in schools and have been working the front lines, you are an expert for sure! Consider where your piece will be published. If it is part of a national publication, be sure to relate your topic to wider issues so that you appeal to a broader spectrum of readers. For example, the fact that the mask mandated was not lifted in County X, underscores a wider problem with government overreach into our rights as parents to choose what is best for our children. Above all else, you want to keep readers interested so it is important to make your story as compelling as possible.

Readers are more likely to stay engaged if you include:  research, anecdotes, quotes and evidentiary hyperlinks to related content. 

Op-Ed Template Outline 


Lede paragraph: This is about 150 words or less. This establishes the news hook. It could be an anecdote. It could be the controversy brewing. 

Follow up paragraph: This explains the lede paragraph further. This is about 100 words or less.

Main Paragraph: Here, you tell people why this is important to them.  Your story may be about something locally, but it is indicative of a larger societal issue. Explain that connection and why it should matter to the reader.  

Body of the op-ed: Do not exceed 500 words.

Closing graf: Do not exceed 100 words. This loops back to your opening statements and reinforces why you are telling this story in the first place. It ties up your argument and makes your issue resonate with the reader and moves them to where you intend. Do you want them to share your vision or point of view or move them to action? End with your vision, goal, final argument and call to action.  

Additional Resources:

How to Write a Letter to the Editor

A letter to an editor is much shorter than writing an article or Op-ed. Most submissions are 250 words or less. Writing a letter to the editor provides you with a great opportunity to share your point of view and get conversations going in a new direction. You can use a Letter to the Editor as a form of rebuttal to unfair or biased news coverage, social media chatter or to enter into a debate within your community. 

You can write to your small local paper or all the way up to a large national outlet. Hitting them all helps you to guide the conversation, but keep in mind, you have to say your piece in a clear and concise way. Two hundred and fifty words is not a lot. 

Sign the letter with your name, city and state, email address and phone number. Editors verify the identity of letter writers. Refer to the article to which you are responding. 

Additional Resources:


Public schools are not the only ones pushing political ideologies and agendas. Of late, many private schools are doing much of the same teaching of extremism. 

It is important to know that private schools are not funded by the government, they are not beholden to the same legal protections that students in public schools benefit from. Private schools are not ruled by school boards, state legislatures or elected officials.  For all of these reasons, private schools are able to shift the direction of  their teaching philosophies very quickly. If your school has shifted to be “woke” there are still some powerful tools you can use to influence your schools and get them back on track. Keep in mind that private schools are very concerned about raising money and in keeping up their reputation as a prestigious institution with standards of excellence. Telling the truth about the school’s activism is a powerful tool for influencing a private school’s curriculum and policies.   

Parents Defending Education has put together the following plan for addressing private schools that have gone woke: 

Organize – If you’re concerned, then many other parents, alums, students, and teachers are concerned as well. Find them, talk to them, and organize a united front. The more the better, but you should also be discreet in how you approach people. The members of your group should ask the head of the school for meetings to express their concerns. In our experience, very little comes from these meetings – but before escalating, the right thing to do, if you feel comfortable doing it, is to share your concerns directly and personally with the head of the school.

Publicize – The single most important building block of any reform effort is showing people the truth about how the school is changing. Remember that donors, alums, prospective students, and parents typically interact with the school through its officials, where the reality of indoctrination and extremism will never be disclosed. To cut through this filter, you can join parents and students at many other schools by starting a “woke at” Instagram page where examples of woke excesses are documented

Pressure – Write a press release to local and national media directing them to your Instagram page. You can make sure parents, donors, alums, and especially members of the school’s board see it (and this can even be done anonymously). Develop a list of demands for reform that you can present to school officials. Encourage parents to withhold contributions to annual fund drives, explicitly over the school’s embrace of a woke agenda.

Additional Resources:


For the most part, school board members may not respond to you during the public comment session in school board meetings. If you are wanting answers to your questions, you will need to write an email to the board as a whole, as well as to each individual member. You may also schedule an appointment to speak with your representative and/or your “At Large” representative. The “At Large” representative is the member that is responsible for all of the districts in your county. There is one “At Large” representative and there should be a member assigned to each district in your county.

Once you have the attention of the school board member(s) you need to make sure that you have done your homework on the issues you are about to discuss. Knowledge is power. Very often, you find that you know more than they do. You may find that the officials don’t really understand the implications of what they’re endorsing and promoting. This gives you a great opportunity to change the narrative with hard facts. If you still need answers that you can not get from the school board, don’t be afraid to contact your state’s department of education. 

Don’t beat around the bush. Ask detailed questions that are very direct. Record the conversation if possible.  Make sure that your state is a one-party consent state. That means that only one person has to know the conversation is being recorded. That person is YOU! 

Below are questions written by our friends at Parents Defending Education that would be great to ask school board members in a public meeting with cameras rolling. Make sure you have someone there recording with their phone. Keep in mind that they can’t answer you, but it is good to get everything on the record. 

If you have a question you think should be added to this list, please email it to us. And if you’ve asked tough questions of school officials and have video of the encounter, please contact us.

  1. Do you believe that people should be treated differently in our school based on the color of their skin?  If an official answers in the affirmative, please contact us immediately.
  2. “Antiracism,” which you are promoting as official school policy, holds that all white people are racist and all institutions of society are racist. Do you consider yourself a racist? If so, what specific acts of racism have you committed? If you do not consider yourself a racist or cannot confess to specific acts of racism, can you explain why you are innocent of something everyone else is guilty of?
  3. You have announced that our school will now be an “antiracist” organization. Antiracism explicitly calls for discrimination on the basis of race. The leader of the antiracism movement, Ibram X. Kendi, writes that “the only remedy to past discrimination is present discrimination. The only remedy to present discrimination is future discrimination.” What specific racial discrimination policies are you adopting in order to become an “antiracist” school?
  4. You have grouped a number of new school policies under the concept of advancing “social justice.” Can you define, using specifics, what “social justice” means? Do you believe that people who disagree with the “social justice” policies you support are advocates of injustice?
  5. Since you have introduced a new curriculum that sees education through the lens of race, it would be helpful to understand how you define race. How exactly do you define someone as black, white, Latino, or Asian? Is someone with one black or Hispanic grandparent a “person of color”? What about one great-grandparent? What metrics do you use?
  6. Are all white people inherently more privileged than all black people regardless of individual circumstances? Is a white child who drops out of school and lives in poverty more privileged than a black child who attends an elite private school and has wealthy, successful parents?
  7. What do you think the eventual impact will be on children who will have spent years involved in activities teaching them that they are inherently bad – or disadvantaged – because of the color of their skin?
  8. You put out a statement on our [district/school]’s website [or social media account] stating that our school [or district] is systemically racist. What specific incidents led you to make this statement, and what actions were taken to remedy those incidents?
  9. Will you disclose publicly how much money our district and school are spending on new race, gender, and “social justice” initiatives? How much is being spent on teacher training programs, DEI consultants, and “audits” of the school? If you have hired someone to carry out an audit, will you release it to the public so parents and students can see it? If not, why not?
  10. How will these antiracist policies positively impact student achievement and test scores?
  11. How will these policies prepare younger students for rigorous academics in high school and high school student for rigorous studies in college? 
  12. What evidence do you have to show that implementing these policies will increase our test scores across all grade levels?  (For this one, it’s important to do some research on your school district’s current test scores as compared to other schools in the area.)


One of the most important things is to get your story heard and to create public interest in your story. Doing this will put pressure on your officials to at least listen to you. The only way to do this is by going to the media. 

How to know who to contact

Finding out who to contact is easy. Just look at all the local and national online and printed publications and all the broadcast and cable news outlets who are talking about and reporting on your issues. Take note of who the reporters are. In some cases, reporters will be assigned to topics, so make sure that you find out who the political, education and community reporters are. For television or talk shows on the radio, learn who the producers and/or show bookers are. 

 From those names you can build a media list. You will be shocked to see how many reporters starty reaching out to you for comment once you start appearing in the media. 

It is imperative to read each reporter’s work because it will be an indication of how they will lean when writing your story. Create a media list of those names, and read what reporters produce in order to determine how they will cover you and your issue. Don’t discount the ones that are not sympathetic to your cause. Slowly get to know them, as you can change their viewpoints if you come prepared with data. At the very least you can get them to acknowledge that their are other points of view worth reporting on.

Ways to to interact with the press

If you speak with the press, there are various ways your conversation can be presented:

  1. On the record: This means that whatever you tell or send to the reporter can be used with no caveats and any source can be quoted by name
  2. Off the record: This means that the reporter cannot use the information you provide in any publication or report. You must get verbal confirmation when your conversation is “off the record.”
  3. Background: This means that what you tell the reporter can be used  but only under the conditions that you stipulate. This also means that the reporter will not attribute the information to you or use your name. You can also negotiate to be quoted with a pseudonym or as a whistleblower or “parent,” something journalists are increasingly doing because they realize that parents and students fear retaliation.

How to pitch your story

Contact the reporter directly after you have written out your story in the most concise and interesting way possible. Make sure it is written in chronological order and that you have supporting documentation. You must convey the who, what, when, where and why of your story. Many times you will email them and never hear back. Don’t worry, this is normal until you develop a rapport with them. Just email them again being very respectful and polite. Don’t give up. If one doesn’t pick up your story, move on to the next. 

Additional Resource:


If Public school parents want to have ammunition to fight their causes with data and facts, they should take advantage of weapon in their arsenal: the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) or similar local public records laws. 

You have the right under your state’s Freedom of Information Act and public records laws to get documents related to your issue of concern. Public school records available include emails from the email addresses of public school officials (including principals, school board members, teachers, staff and anyone with a school email address). Also available are contracts, curriculum, trainings, videos, text messages and other records that provide valuable information about events, classes and other issues that may be of issue to you. 

A FOIA requests usually takes anywhere from a few days, but he school can request an extension.  

Additional Resources:

Royal Oak Schools in Michigan issued a FOIA Procedures and Guidelines Manual that spells out its fee process and offers a guidebook that most school districts don’t typically provide. It offers good insight from a school district into the FOIA process.

First Amendment

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. 

– First Amendment of the United States Constitution

The First Amendment includes several specific freedoms that are particularly relevant to K-12 students.

Prohibited Speech: School officials cannot formally restrict most student speech. As a general rule, the U.S. Constitution protects student speech that does not “materially and substantially interfere with the requirements of appropriate discipline in the operation of the school.” In addition, school officials bear the burden of justifying any restrictions on student speech. Nevertheless, “the constitutional rights of students in public school are not automatically coextensive with the rights of adults in other settings.” Schools also can punish lewd or offensive speech that occurs at school. But when the school’s concerns are not legitimate, its authority to restrict student speech ends. 

Compelled Speech: School districts cannot compel student speech on any topic. “If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein.” West Virginia v. Barnette (1943)

Retaliation: Teachers and other school officials cannot retaliate against students who engage in protected speech in the classroom, on school grounds, or off school grounds. Although the test varies slightly by circuit, the federal appellate courts have held that students can sue for First Amendment retaliation if they were engaged in protected speech, the school took an adverse action, and the student’s speech was a motivating factor for the school’s action. The school’s adverse action must be something that would deter a student of ordinary firmness from engaging in that speech again. Giving a student poor grades or reviews is a clear example. Notably, the Eighth Circuit recently held that “the stress, anxiety, and ostracization arising from a teacher’s false attribution of racist utterances to a middle-schooler” also “might fit the bill.”

Additional Resources:

*Source: Parents Defending Education, Resources


No person in the United States shall, based on sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. –Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 

Title IX protects people from discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance. Title IX applies to institutions that receive federal financial assistance from ED, including state and local educational agencies. These agencies include approximately 16,500 local school districts, 7,000 postsecondary institutions, as well as charter schools, for-profit schools, libraries, and museums. Also included are vocational rehabilitation agencies and education agencies of 50 states, the District of Columbia, and territories and possessions of the United States.

Additional Resources:

Know Your Rights: Sex Discrimination, American Civil Liberties Union


No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. –Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects people from discrimination based on race, color or national origin in programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance. Agencies and institutions that receive ED funds covered by Title VI include: 50 state education agencies, their subrecipients, and vocational rehabilitation agencies; the education and vocational rehabilitation agencies of the District of Columbia and of the territories and possessions of the United States; 17,000 local education systems; 4,700 colleges and universities; 10,000 proprietary institutions; and other institutions, such as libraries and museums that receive ED funds.

“[T]o establish a prima facie case under Title VI, plaintiffs must show that they: (1) are members of a protected class; (2) were qualified for the educational benefit or program at issue; (3) suffered an adverse action; and (4) the adverse action occurred under circumstances giving rise to an inference of discrimination.” 

Evidence that similarly situated students outside the protected class were treated differently than the plaintiff can raise an inference of discrimination. In addition, school officials’ deliberate indifference to student-on- student discrimination that causes a hostile learning environment can be a form of intentional discrimination. Put differently, plaintiffs do not need to prove that a teacher or school intentionally discriminated against students to prevail on a Title VI claim; they only need to prove that a public official ignored pervasive discrimination or encouraged such discrimination.

Additional Resources


The number one rule to keep in mind if you have an issue at school, whether your child is in public or private school, is that you must document every single thing, all the time. If you didn’t document it, it didn’t happen. 

So, document all day, every day. For the issue you are concerned about, you must write a chronological timeline from the start of the issue and continue documenting. This means keeping a journal about everything. Include dates and times and information about what happened before and after. The devil is in the details. Write down information about everything including: emails, texts, homework assignments, reading lists, digital resources, teaching, surveys or training. 

  • Don’t just write things down. Anything that you can download, DOWNLOAD and add to your Facts binder. Take screenshots of everything that is online (making sure to include the timestamp and date that is on the computer) save the content as a PDF and as screenshots. Save Word documents as files.
  • Videos are the best. Check to see if your state is a two person state.  It’s important to find out your state law. In two-person states, you can make videos without the other party knowing. Save your video and download it. There are various applications available, such as Screencast-o-matic and Quicktime (which can do screen recordings) or Replay Media Catcher (which can download videos, such as school board meetings). You can also use your own phone to record recorded videos when you are not live and in person.
  • Make audio recordings. It’s important to find out your state law. 
  • Take photographs of content that you are worried about.
  • When you attend meetings, take notes in real time. Pull out a notebook. Write longhand. Repeat statements that cause you concern to confirm what you heard.

How to Speak to Your School Board

How to find your school board calendar and key dates

Go to your school district’s official website. Look for and click on the link for the School Board’s site. Use the “search” tool if you are having trouble finding it, by entering your school district name and the words “school boards”. The calendar will be located on the school board website.  

How to register to speak at a school board meeting

Sometimes you can call to place yourself on the speaker list, but most times you have to register online. Online registry usually opens a few days before the meeting date. 

On the school board’s website, click on “Citizen Participation” or a similar option. After clicking, look for a button that says something like “Register to Speak at Regular School Board meeting”. You may have the opportunity to speak in-person or virtually. Make sure you know which one you are signing up for if you do have the choice. 

Find out what the start and end dates are for the sign up! Some districts have a designated time when speaker registration opens and ends. Speaking spots fill up very quickly and you speak in order of when you signed up. 

You will have a definitive length of time to speak. Some school boards allow for five minutes, some for three minutes, some for one  or even less. Make sure to know how much time you have in advance so you don’t get buzzed out of the room without finishing your sentence. 

How to talk to your school board 

Communicate clearly with the members on the Board. Speak from your heart as much as possible, telling your story as a community member, leader or parent. Make sure to use your time to say why you care and how you are affected. Use data and facts to back up your statements. Practice before you go so that you can look up at the board members and not down at your paper, and so you don’t get cut off. 

Questions to ask school officials (school board, superintendent, principal, etc.)

  1. What are the upcoming issues your school board will be debating and discussing?
  2. How will information about XYZ issues be communicated to the public?
  3. When will public engagement sessions be and how will those be communicated?
  4. How was this policy determined to be in the best interest of our students?
  5. How do I opt out my student from this topic/lesson/project?
  6. How much was consultant XYZ paid? Where can I see their contract? 
  7. Where and how will school board meeting minutes be shared?

Additional Resources:


Announcing to the world what’s happening at your school will put necessary pressure on them.

Woke activists have taken hold of the English language and are using them to manipulate parents and citizens to believe that what they are doing is either benign or admirable. The words you have heard most are – inclusion, equity, justice. I mean, how can you argue with those great words and with what you think they mean. Unfortunately, the woke activists have hijacked these words to enable practices in schools that are divisive, toxic, and extreme.

Don’t be fooled by the creative use of language. Get familiar with the code language in order to protect your children. Click here to read a simple guide to understanding woke jargon.

The bottom line is that we need to demand transparency and hold our administrations and board accountable to not treating groups of people differently.  

One way to do this is to create a social media page for your school and invite people to document examples of woke indoctrination. Putting indisputable facts in one place for your community and for the world to see is enormously powerful.

Start by using Instagram. Setting up an account is fast and easy, but best of all it is anonymous. Instagram has created their platform to be easy to find and easy to share. It is a great way to create a network of like-minded individuals and to create a depository of documentation.  

Thank you to our friends at Parents Defending Education who put together the step by step instructions below on how to create an Instagram account that will help you to create your network and build your repository. 

Here is how to set up your Instagram page:

  1. Use Gmail to create a brand new email address that you will use for all of the social media platforms that will use for your efforts. 

 Make sure the name of the address does not give away any personal identifying information. You should use Gmail because you will also be creating an anonymous Google Form. For added security,  enable  two-step verification for this Gmail account, as well as a password generator to create strong (and different) passwords for all your accounts.

  1. Use your new Gmail address to  create a new Instagram account. Many have used the “Woke At” formulation for their names, and we recommend doing this as it helps show we’re building a powerful local-national movement.

    For the “full name” field, use “Woke at [school name].” For the “username” field, use “wokeat[school name].” You should also use the two-step verification for this account as well
  2. Write a short and concise bio to describe your organization in the Instagram bio statement section. Make sure to stay dignified and respectful. For example: We are committed to protecting all students by documenting harmful practices, divisive curricula, extremism, or radicalism within our schools in the interest of transparency and raising awareness in the community. You can look at some of the Instagram pages linked below for examples. At the end of your bio, post the Gmail address you created in Step 1 so that people can get in touch with you.
  3. Now you can set up a Google Form, and paste the link to it in your Instagram bio. This Form is where you can post a longer statement  that is a little longer than in the bio statement, if you wish, about your goals, what’s happening at your school, and your invitation to like-minded parents, students, and teachers to join you.

    Crucially, the Google Form allows you to receive anonymous tips and testimonials from students, parents, and teachers. Giving people a way to tell their stories safely and anonymously is incredibly important given how angry and retaliatory many woke activists get when criticized. Submissions are truly anonymous – you, the site owner, won’t know who’s contacting you – so people can be assured that they can speak freely and safely. Don’t be surprised when woke activists use the form to send you nasty messages.
  4. Once you’ve got all this set up – it shouldn’t take longer than an hour – you can discreetly tell friends about it, or use your new Gmail account to anonymously tip off people in your community who you think would be interested in contributing. In the beginning, you will need to build a network of contributors and tipsters – like minded parents, teachers, and students – to submit information and stories. Once people start finding out about your page, contributions will start coming in on their own. Use your judgment about how open or secretive you wish to be, but we recommend erring on the side of secrecy. Secrecy also helps keep the focus on the information you’re revealing, not on the identity of who’s revealing it.
  5. We suggest following other Woke At pages, school accounts, and accounts relevant to the problem we’re confronting. The accounts you follow are publicly viewable – so if you follow a bunch of your friends after you form the page, it will quickly become pretty obvious who’s behind it.

What should you post?

  • You can find a lot of good material to use on your school’s website. Some outrageous materials are posted out in the open, in course descriptions, posts about curriculum, school board hearings, etc – you just have to look for it. Doing this research is a great way of learning more about the issues and it can also be delegated to members of your coalition. 
  • Look at the social media pages of teachers and administrators at your school. They are often quite proud of what they’re doing and sometimes post incriminating statements or materials.
  • It’s fine to post emails so long as they were sent to a large group where the sender has no expectation of privacy – such as a school-wide email or an email to a class. We suggest blocking out any identifying information, such as names of students and teachers.
  • You and your partners should keep an eye on homework assignments and what’s taught in class, especially when it comes to issues of politics, activism, race, gender, and the like.

What shouldn’t you post?

  • As important as it is to show what’s really happening at your school, there are some vital guidelines to follow. You don’t want to give your school and any activists who work there an opening to play victim, credibly accuse you of unethical behavior, or dismiss you as an extremist.
  • Absolutely no doxxing, no posting names of students, and where possible avoid posting names of teachers. We think school officials, like principals and administrators, are fair game. But never post images or documents that contain email addresses, phone numbers, addresses, or identifying information. It’s easy to block or strip out this kind of identifying information before posting.
  • Avoid partisan politics, insults, rants, personal feuds, or vendettas. Keep your page focused on the real mission: showing your community and the world what’s going on at your school.
  • Don’t post petty or insignificant items. Go for quality over quantity. You want each post to convey something meaningful about the climate in the school. 
  • In your posts, avoid exaggeration and always be truthful. Unlike the woke activists, we don’t need to lie or obfuscate – we only need to tell the truth. It’s fine to include a short commentary with your post, and it’s fine to express yourself sharply – but keep it respectful.
  • It’s up to you to include materials and messages against wokeism, but the main focus of the page should be informing your community about what’s happening at school
  • Don’t assume that everyone reading your page and who shares your concern about schools agrees with your political views on other issues, so try to use language that doesn’t polarize.

A few technical tips on using Instagram: 

  • Use your computer’s screenshot feature to capture images of things you want to post. Save everything you post in a folder, just in case one day your account gets suspended or shut down by Instagram (we don’t anticipate this being a problem, but better to be prepared).
  • Instagram likes square-shaped images. It’s easiest to crop your images square from the start.
  • For written testimonials, paste them into Word or an email and screenshot them. You’ll have to create narrow margins so your text fits in a box shape, rather than a rectangle. 
  • You’ll meet a lot of interesting people – supporters and critics alike – through Direct Messages. Don’t forget to check your DM’s, and especially the “message requests” inbox – this is where most of your messages will arrive.

Tips on the Google form:

  • It is truly anonymous, so you will not receive any information identifying submissions.
  • You must use your judgment when deciding what to post and what not to post. You should feel no obligation to post submissions that are inappropriate, frivolous, and so on.
  • You may receive submissions from critics outraged that you are drawing attention to their activities at your school. Woke activists typically do not believe that anyone has a right to disagree with or question them, so they often have strong reactions to exposure. Sometimes this will just be insults or a rant, but we know of instances when critics have submitted testimonials designed to trick you into posting false information. Usually these are easy to spot, but occasionally they are clever. In journalism, it’s known as a story that’s “too good to check.” It’s important to be on the lookout and use your judgment to avoid posting something that hands your detractors an embarrassing victory.
  • It’s fine to lightly edit submissions for length, clarity, grammar, and to remove personal or identifying information. But you must be careful not to alter a submission’s meaning. The power of testimonials is their authenticity, and you do not want someone accusing your page of changing the meaning of submissions.


America’s public schools have a legal responsibility to protect every student’s right to learn in an environment free from unlawful discrimination. Institutions, programs, or activities that receive funds from the Department of Education are required by law to operate in a nondiscriminatory manner. This includes most everything a school does: admissions, recruitment, financial aid, academic programs, student services, counseling and guidance, discipline, classroom assignments, grading, and so on. 

When schools fail to meet their responsibilities under federal civil rights laws, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is tasked with remedying such failures. Often, the process of remedying civil rights violations begins with filing a complaint with OCR. 

In order to demystify this process, Parents Defending Education has created a PDF guide to walk you through this process. 

Resources for Parents:

  1. National School Board Association (NSBA) – Learn more about the advocacy agenda of the NSBA, the national association to which all local school board members belong by default.
  2. American Enterprise Institute (AEI) – A detailed survey and snapshot report on the nation’s school boards, governance, statistics on school board members, and more.
  3. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) – Is your school board focused on pathways to success for all students? Do they discuss meeting the needs of students not only to be college-ready, but also work and life ready? The future job openings by education level are predicted by BLS and your local school board should be preparing students accordingly.
  4. National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) – Love data? The NCES is the U.S. Department of Education’s data warehouse from its Institute for Education Science. Find information on the size of schools, school districts, student population, attendance, demographics, and more on this site.
  5. Education Commission of the States – An overview and comparison of each state’s role in educationof their K-12 students, including their constitutions and the power and duties of their legislatures, governors, state educational leadership, and local school boards.


If you are tired of your school boards not doing their two main important jobs; providing a world-class education and keeping students safe while in their care, then you have a real opportunity to make change. You can do this by running for the school board yourself!

This is a sure fire way of ensuring that toxic and destructive policies are not enabled. You will have a direct effect on stopping the incorporation of  “critical race theory”, removing advanced mathematics and science through detracking students and teaching, eliminating advanced or honors classes, weaving into all aspects of the curriculum and teacher trainings, content that involves the tenets of “crititical race theory”, social justice and anti-Americanism, while promoting sexually inappropriate, even pornographic, material in K-12 classrooms 

What you can do is RUN FOR SCHOOL BOARD!

If you are asking yourself if you are qualified to run, the answer is YES! You do not need any special qualifications. All you need to do is get your name on that ballot and lobby for your seat.

If you really want to see change, it is up to you to change it. Find out when the elections are and start lobbying your support.  Any time you question yourself about whether or not you are a qualified candidate, remind yourself that you are uniquely qualified as a parent who cares about the educational and social/emotional outcomes of students much more than a candidate who is using the school board chair to launch a career into politics. 

With that said, it is not a requirement to be a parent to run- you may be a citizen who is concerned about the future leadership of our country. You may just simply care about the education and growth of your county’s kids. You too, are uniquely qualified for the seat. Run! 

Steps for Running for School Board

Here is how you can launch your campaign:

  1. When Is the Election: Create a timeline in order to build a framework for your campaign. Find out when the next school board election will be held. When is the General Election? Work backwards from that date, filling the dates for any primary, candidacy-filling dates, etc.. Figure out when the next school board election will be held. 
  2. Who is Currently on the Board: Wright down each member of the current school board, including what district they represent within your county. Write down pertinent facts about their seat, like: how long have they been serving, will they run again, what are the important issues to their community, what have they done well and what have they not done well while serving. What political affiliation do they represent? Do they have groups behind them? Who is supporting them? If you run for the seat, who will be challenging you?  
  3. Why Are You Running: Write down all the reasons why you want to run for the School Board. For each of those reason, thing about what is good and what is bad under those topics. 
    • The Good: How is the current school board positively managing issues? It’s important to know about them and be able to talk about them.
    • The Bad: This is the  important part. This will be your reason for running. Make a list of what the school board and members are not doing well. Do your friends, parents, and family share your beliefs about how the board is doing. Be specific in your documentation about what is going wrong and what issues will make someone support a new school board member
    • How will you Fix Things: Tell people how you’d fix the problems, making sure your solutions are doable and realistic.  This is the key to gaining support for your campaign.  
  4. What Happened in the Past: Look at past elections to determine how many candidates campaigned for each school board seat. How much money did they raise? How much did they spend? What was the vote count at the end?  This will help you develop a plan for action
  5. The Campaign & Election: Now that you have a campaign plan, it is time to focus on the campaign and then the election. 
    • Create your team. Find trusted friends, family or neighbors who will support you throughout your campaign. You will need your team to help get petitions signed to get you on the ballot. Someone can handle your donations as your treasurer. Others can help you fundraise, strategize and cheer you on.  
    • Attend school board meetings. It is imperative that you attend school board meetings in person in order to see all the goings-on that are missed virtually. This will give you valuable insight to use in campaign messaging.
    • Know your district. Knowledge is power. Learn as much as you can about your district. Learn the statistics on the number of students, schools, and employees, the size of the budget and its recent growth, how the budget and school construction is funded, the boundaries and constituent base of the school board seat, and other general information that will help you be familiar with the concerns of fellow parents.
    • What’s your message? You know what you and your community want in order to be happy with your schools. Develop your talking points around this and talk about your ideas about how you will address the issues. Always be sure to be positive and to stay away from coming across as angry or extreme. 
    • Fundraise and Meet & Greet. The part of campaigning that gives most people anxiety is asking for money, but keep in mind that you are asking for money so that you can make the schools better for kids and for the betterment of the community.  
      • You have to establish a campaign budget. It should be based on research of previous campaigns. You will not be raising money on yourself. Your team should be raising money for you while you are focused on campaigning.  
      • Important: Spend your time meeting with people and asking them to vote for you. Don’t spend a lot of money on signage. It is much more important to speak to voters.  
      • Your volunteers should set up many “Meet & Greet” events. They should be simple events that give you the opportunity to talk with people you do not know throughout the community you seek to represent. These events will grow the conversation with your future constituents and help you better understand what they care about.
      • Listen, a lot! Be willing to add, adjust, and manage your messaging based on what you hear when you listen to people’s concerns.
      • Talk to people – everywhere. Be unafraid to tell everyone you are running and to ask for their vote.

Be Unafraid and Confident!

Finally, prepare yourself for pushback and even some confrontation. If you truly believe in what you are saying,stand firm in your convictions. Surround yourself with like minded people who will stand up for you and fight your fight. Know upfront that people will talk about in person and on social media. If they are doing that, you are doing something right! 

Have fun with your campaigning. You will meet all different kinds of people from all across your community who will support you and fight for you. 

Never forget the important work you are doing and why you are doing it!

Resources for Parents:

The Name on the Ballot You’ve Never Heard Of: An overview from American Enterprise Institute’s (AEI) Nat Malkus on why candidates for school board matter.

Southlake, Texas Parents Sweep School Board Elections: They battled back against the Critical Race Theory-pushers and WON! They did it, and you can too!

How To Stop Critical Race Theory In Your Local Schools: Advice from a School Board Member

This School District’s Parents Are Fighting Back in Unison: See how these parents are organizing, communicating, and exposing school board members! Have social-media savvy parents? Take to the local radio airwaves, twitter-sphere and more to carry a campaign message like parents in this county, who are working to recall current school board members while they plan to run and support fellow parents in the next election to take back their school board!

The Makings of a School Board Member: A concise overview of the qualities that make a great school board member. While the article may be somewhat dated, the information and relevancy are not.


Many of us know that if we want to see things change, the best place to begin is with the elected body that sets your school policies. This is the School Board.  Local school boards yield tremendous power over all schools. If a school is not focused on Education, Budget, Board Governess and Curriculum, the school will not function well.   

First, the basics

Across all schools, across the nation, school board members comprise the nation’s largest body of elected officials.

After the school board members are elected, the school board, together, makes almost all of the important decisions related to education in their district. They oversee a large portion of the county budget.  

The school board is only accountable to voters in their county. While they do have to adhere to the standards for testing and assessments set forth by the state board, they are not held accountable to them. 

The school board is responsible for hiring the Superintendent, who is hired to run the operations of the school district. The school board is supposed to exercise oversight in a way that is consistent with the community.

Even though school boards have so much power over the schools, typically there is low voter turnout for school board elections. Very prevalent today, in school board meeting rooms across the country, we are seeing that the school boards are at odds with the values and priorities of the community – and so it is important that community members know who is on the ballot and vote with purpose in order to prevent activist schools boards from doing what they can do and do what the should do. 

A: Academics

All school boards should be primarily focused on providing students with the gold stand in world class education. The pursuit of academic excellence for all students should be the primary focus of any school board. There should be insurmountable evidence to the fact that the school board’s number one priority are their students. Go to school board meetings to hear discussions regarding policies and be sure to read the Board Documents to know what the Board is discussing

All students need support; and it is the school board’s main purpose is to ensure each student has a path to success..

Increasingly, we are finding that this is not the case. Instead, the Academics has been replaced by “Advocacy” by an activist school board who no longer focuses on education, but political ideologies and private interest group agendas that have little to do with the academic success of students. 

Parents and taxpayers are well within their rights to insist upon accountability in the board’s and superintendents performance in providing a quality education to their students, in a safe and welcoming school environment. Parents and tax payers can hold the Board and Superintendent accountable by attending school board meetings and making public comments, submitting written questions or requests for an open town hall to a school board member, or filing a freedom of information action (FOIA) request.

The ultimate form of accountability is nominating and electing school board members who reflect the will of the community, or recalling those board members who choose to defy the wishes and interests of the people.

B: Budget and Board Governance

The school board budget is made up of money from  local, state, and federal taxes. Most of the money in the budget is intended to cover salaries. Employees and staff are the main cost.  It is important to understand and ask the details about how salaries are allocated to specific schools, grades, programs, and initiatives. Knowing this information can help you gain clarity into if the budget is being spent on political causes or other initiatives that don’t meet the community’s values. 

If you ever listened to a budget meeting, you will hear the Board and the Superintendent mention the   “cost per student”  dollar figure which is used to identify the cost of education in a community. It is important to note that the cost per student does not provide clarity on the priorities of the superintendent and school board.

You are the taxpayer who funds the schools, which gives you the right to see the budget and ask for budget details. 

The Board sets it’s own parameters on when to meet, how often, for how long and what is on the agenda. You can garner insight on the Board’s priorities by taking a look at the agendas they create for their meetings. 

While the school board is not governed by anyone other than itself, it is important that you provide oversight by watch or attending school board meetings to see how they are operating and getting insight to their priorities and how they are governing themselves. You can always use FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) to find out more information on any topic that does not pertain to minors.

A school board should post relevant agendas and documents for the public well in advance of meetings and adhere to open meetings (or “sunshine”) laws, as applicable, by making decisions in public.

If a local school board does not appear to be governing or functioning in a transparent way, the time has come for parents and community members to get together and demand clarity and accountability.

C: Curriculum

Curriculum is very important. And you have every right to transparency as it relates to Curriculum. What are students learning. Why are they learning it? Who is teaching it? How are they teaching it?  

The current climate of education in the nation has seen certain curriculum areas come under attack. More school boards are cutting out advanced studies in math and science,  They are overhauling history curriculmare actively placing magnet programs and schools, history curriculum, and accelerated or advanced studies in math and science either on the chopping block or having them overhauled. These efforts seek to eliminate or alter curriculum under the guise of objectives such as “anti-racism,” to advance “equity,” or to advance other political agendas.

It is important to remember that the authority for approving curriculum lays squarely with a local school board. While the state board of education may have standards that have to be met or upheld, the decision rests on the vote of each school board member to accept or reject the recommendations of the superintendent.

Inquiring what children are taught in a local school or district should be a relatively simple exercise. The degree of accountability and transparency the school board demonstrates will be evident in the degree of ease of access parents and members of the public have to the curriculum materials, pedagogical practices in curriculum delivery, and individual student achievement.

Parents and the community at large should be proactively informed about the curriculum and educational goals of the school board. Questions that arise from parents should be answered fully and without delay or obfuscation. Encountering pushback, or less than fulsome answers, should cue a parent to ask for a lot more details about what is being taught, how it is being taught, and why the students are learning the selected curriculum.

D: Engaging – or Becoming – Your Local School Board

Understanding and addressing education in the classroom begins with parents getting involved with their local school board. By attending or watching their meetings, the competencies of a school board are revealed. How does the board focus its time, direct its superintendent, interact with the public, spend the taxpayer’s money, and respect the voice of parents and the community they represent?

Every election season gives parents an opportunity for a reset if education is not going in the right direction in their community. An election season begins well in advance, with recruiting candidates, determining the best approach to issues, and then a campaign of turning out supporters for candidates whose election will create an opportunity for positive change.

The single most effective thing you and other concerned members of your community can do is get involved with your school board – and be empowered to run for the school board or help those that do so!


There are many kinds of Open Letters. Some are written by groups of concerned community members, some by politicians and some are in the form of letters to the editor

An Open Letters is a letter that addresses a specific person or organization. It is written with the goal of expressing opinions and expanding the conversation around an issue to the general public. Open Letters are a very effective way to influence people and to get them fighting for a cause important to the community. It is a great way to move people to action,

An Open Letter is a great way to unite multiple voices in an effort to drive awareness for an issue to the broader community, especially when a position is not being well addressed by community leaders or school board members. 

For the most effective Open Letter, write it in a clear, pointed and concise way that is easy to read, while still compelling enough to attract public attention to your issue. 

Letters are most often published in the newspapers, but they can be published in blogs, emails or even sent out in mail. Letters can be from groups of parents, alumni, students.

Open Letters  can put the necessary pressure on school boards and policy makers.

Here are some examples of effective open letters recently sent to schools: 



Speaking up at school is scary, but it is important. You should always remember that as a parent and tax payer Public school officials, school board members and school administrators work for you. We are always afraid that we will be retaliated against. Well, you should know that there are laws against that. Retaliation is illegal

You have a right to free speech and you have a right to address the school administration and the the school board, as this is your child, not theirs. You are your child’s best advocate. Release your inner mama or papa bear!  

Where should you speak up?

Definitely go to your Parent Teacher Association meetings. There, you can talk to other parents about issues that you are facing, educate the community and try to get answers from  your school principal.

School board meetings are a bit more formal, but it is critical that you go and speak. You get nervous at first, but remember you are advocating for your child and you are larger than life when you are doing that! Go to your district’s site, search for the school board’s page on the site and then find out the meeting schedule and the rules about how to sign up. You usually sign up online a couple days before the meeting. You will speak either in person or virtually. You are assigned your order based on the order you signed up. There are a limited number of spots, so sign up early. There are many types of meetings where you can speak up. They include work sessions, advisory committee meetings and, most publicly, the (usually) monthly or bi-monthly board meetings. 

Find out how much time you have. Write down a first draft of your speech, even if you speak from the cuff on game day. The rule of thumb is about 200 words for a one-minute speech. You don’t want to get cut off before you’re finished, so less is more. 

Always tell your story in a sentence or two — I’m the parent of a second grader who moved to the area 10 years ago for the schools — and then identify the problem, provide your solution and express your specific ask. 

Additional Resources:

Woke Schooling: A Toolkit for Concerned Parents, Manhattan Institute