Building on the momentum of parental pushback at public school districts nationwide, a coalition of parents are planning a rally Tuesday to resist the implementation of critical race theory in their children’s public schools.
The upcoming rally, called the ERACED Rally, is planned for 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Loudoun County Public Schools headquarters in Ashburn, Virginia, ahead of the scheduled school board meeting.
Elicia Brand, one of the event organizers, told The Christian Post in a phone interview that despite the efforts of Gov. Glenn Youngkin — a Republican who won the Virginia gubernatorial race in large part due to the parental pushback against school boards statewide — in the form of an executive order disallowing any type of critical theory instruction in schools, some districts have doubled down.
“I have a lot of teachers anonymously sending me their training material, and it contains the concepts of critical race theory,” Brand said. “Very simply put, it’s race essentialism, saying one race is superior or inferior to another race. It’s anti-American, it’s anti-family, and it’s anti-transparency.”
“In addition to defying the Youngkin executive order, it also contravenes the law that protects parents as the true custodians of their children,” she added.
A tactic of those pushing critical race theory has been to constantly change the names and meanings of words, Brand noted, and to pit students against each other on the basis of race.
“Critical race theory, the theory itself, is not taught in schools. I wish it was, I wish they would teach the theory, but they’re not. They’re putting into practice the concepts of critical race theory and that’s the key to this whole thing. It’s infused into every assignment, every lecture, every book or video. It is infused in policies and it further divides our children,” she said, calling these practices “vengeful, discriminatory and racist.”
Many of the parents participating in Tuesday’s rally are racial minorities who do not want this for their children, Brand said.
Among those parent advocacy groups participating are the recently constituted Army of Parents, Fight for Schools, and Moms for Liberty, which are presenting several speakers including author John Amanchukwu, a college football player turned pastor and public speaker, and Erin Roselle-Poe, the president of the Loudoun County Republican Women’s Club (LCRWC) who also serves as vice president and co-founder of Army of Parents and has collected more than 1,500 books through the ‘This, Not That-Return to Literacy’ book drive to be donated to the Loudoun County Public School (LCPS) classroom libraries.
“We’re calling the book drive the ‘This, Not That, Return to Literacy,’” Roselle-Poe, said in a Tuesday press release shared on Brand’s Medium account.
“Our goal is to do something positive instead of the negative that has surrounded our schools. Supporting teachers and classroom libraries with all types of literary genres is a great way to make a difference.”
Amanchukwu, the author of the forthcoming book Eraced: Uncovering the Lies of Critical Race Theory and Abortion, recently spoke at one of Loudoun County’s largest evangelical churches, Cornerstone Chapel in Leesburg. Many pastors struggle with acknowledging that critical race theory does not belong in the Church, he explained last month.
“Racism is not a color or a skin tone. Racism is a sin. … They say through critical race theory that ‘whites are inherently racist.’ That’s not true. What if a person gets born again? [And if] you ask a critical race theorist, they still believe that you’re inherently racist because of the color of your skin. Well, here’s the reality with that. Racism is a choice,” Amanchukwu said.
“You choose to look at your brother or sister in Christ through a prejudiced or biased lens. This is a choice. And we don’t need worldly terms to help us deal with biblical racial reconciliation. We have the Word of God. And the Bible tells us to love our neighbors as ourselves.”
Loudoun County parents Clint and Erin Thomas believe the issues that Loudoun County parents raised their voices over last fall, which garnered international media attention, are not going away because LCPS has not changed how they operate.
“They haven’t really changed their policies, they haven’t changed the focus on skin color, victim class, and getting rid of meritocracy,” Clint Thomas said in a phone interview with CP.
The rally’s focus will be to acknowledge that racism is indeed evil and has existed and still exists in some ways in society, he explained.
“But we don’t believe that racism is in everything that critical race theory would have [us believe], and we’re here to say that you can’t solve racism with further racism,” Thomas said.
“We need to get the focus back on academics and we need to remind parents that that needs to be the goal of LCPS.”
Erin Thomas added: “The purpose of this rally is to bring people together as there is definitely momentum. And ERACED is a movement that loves life for every race and color and sees all mankind as one blood and equally valuable. And that’s what we’re there to share.”
“Our hope is that many people come out next Tuesday and see for themselves. Parents are waking up to the truth of what’s going on in our school system and it’s time to act.”
Clint Thomas believes that the schools doubling down on these policies that have precipitated the backlash might turn around once the results of the recently ordered grand jury investigation are released.
Earlier this year, Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares set in motion an investigation of LCPS amid allegations that the school systems covered up a sexual assault by a “genderfluid” student at one high school, which allowed the teen to be transferred to a different school where he assaulted another girl.
Last week, the Virginia Supreme Court ruled that the grand jury investigating LCPS could continue; LCPS had filed a lawsuit in an attempt to stop the grand jury proceedings, claiming the investigation was unconstitutional.
“The school board has offered no convincing argument for why the grand jury investigation infringes this provision,” the state high court wrote, according to WTOP.
“The school board will continue to oversee the county’s schools exactly as before. The constitutional power to administer a school district does not bring with it immunity from investigation for violations of the criminal law.”
Additional rally speakers in the Tuesday lineup are: Hung Cao, a national GOP Congressional candidate for the 10th district of Virginia; Ian Prior, executive director of Fight for Schools; radio show host Joe Mobley; Cheryl Onderchain, president of the Loudoun County chapter of Moms for Liberty; two candidates for LCPS school board, and several others.