After a top official of the Virginia state PTA appeared to wish death on parents who oppose “equity” initiatives in school curricula, the organization said it would address the “disturbing choice of words used by a board member during a public event” with more “sensitivity training.”
“We believe in diversity, equity, and inclusion. However, we also know words have power and that it is important to understand the impact of our language. This summer, Virginia PTA board members will participate in sensitivity training to ensure that we remain mindful of our community,” it said.
It did not say it would take any action against Michelle Leete, who ended a tirade about those who disagree with her on educational policy by saying “Let them die!,” a comment greeted by cheers.
Sensitivity training typically overlaps with leftist equity training, so that amounts to using something offensive done in the name of “equity” to justify more “equity.”
Leete has remained unapologetic and mocking those who are concerned with the violent rhetoric, writing on Twitter, “Happy to contribute in any way I can to their red meat.”
I have sent @VirginiaPTA @Fairfax_PTA @fccpta @FairfaxNAACP @CroomPam @NationalPTA @leetema requests for comment. Meanwhile, Michelle Leete has posted these tweets, claiming “anti-whateva outrage” and people “twist words to gin up faux outrage.” pic.twitter.com/yRblrC3rFf
— Asra Q. Nomani (@AsraNomani) July 16, 2021
It was unclear why a group nominally representing all parents of public school students would need special training to remain “mindful of our community.”
On Twitter, one user remarked: “I’m old enough to remember when PTA’s had bake sales and never, ever, once told people to die.”
The state PTA removed its officers’ names from its website and prohibited replies to the statement on Twitter. The county PTA (whose communications director is Leete) did not respond to The Daily Wire’s request for comment.
Fairfax County Public Schools declined to condemn the violent rhetoric, saying in a statement to Fox News: “FCPS prides itself on being an inclusive and positive organization. It is not our place to comment on the remarks made by an individual outside our organization.”
The school system routinely issues public statements about matters that have nothing to do with it, including wading into Middle East foreign policy and pontificating on a police-brutality court case in Minneapolis.
Leete, by contrast, occupies top roles in a surprising number of organizations, including those affiliated with the school system.
For example, as of 2020 Leete sat on the Fairfax County “Successful Children and Youth Policy Team” alongside a host of school board members and top district officials as well as teachers union head Kimberly Adams.
In her day job, Leete works for the U.S. Congress’s Architect of the Capitol, according to her LinkedIn.
The Fairfax NAACP has also not issued any public condemnation of Leete’s remarks, and she is still listed as an officer on its website.
The Daily Wire previously reported how the PTA — which for decades parents assumed was a suitable way to be involved in their children’s education — has repeatedly lobbied for positions preferred by teachers and opposed by parents. Its findings included:
- The PTA joined with the national teachers union to oppose a push to open schools.
- The PTA has taken multiple positions that contradict the opinion of the majority of parents, including its opposition to school choice and support for transgender students in locker rooms and bathrooms.
- Teachers union officials have permeated the PTA leadership from top to bottom. In one case, the same woman is both vice president of the Colorado PTA and on the national board of the NEA teachers union; another man went from being an officer of the Massachusetts teachers union to an officer of the National PTA.
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