Voters dealt a decisive blow to advocates of a school “diversity” plan in Southlake, Texas, Tuesday, electing a third straight school board member on promises to reject the plan and fight Critical Race Theory-inspired doctrine in the school system.
Andrew Yeager, a regional ad sales executive for NBCUniversal-owned TV stations, beat former teacher Stephanie Williams for a spot on the Carroll Independent School District board, receiving 65.4% of the roughly 9,400 votes cast. Williams, who campaigned in support of the diversity plan, received 34.6% of the vote, according to NBC News.
Yeager’s run was backed by the Southlake Families PAC, a conservative group funding candidates for the school board who oppose the diversity plan. The plan, the group says, “includes some of the most extreme liberal positions in the history of Texas public education.”
A draft of the plan includes 153 points of action over 43 pages. One section that the plan that the PAC took particular issue with calls for creating a “systemic process for consistently tracking and reporting microaggressions and incidents of discrimination,” according to the plan. The plan also calls for adding a “diversity” criteria to the hiring process.
Proponents argued that the strategy, known as the Cultural Competence Action Plan (CCAP), would combat racism at the school.
“This was about protecting students,” Willams told NBC News after losing the school board election. “And it was about making sure our school system was inclusive and safe, and provided all students the opportunity to be their best. And I’m concerned about not only not addressing the needs of those kids, but perhaps even going backward.”
The Southlake Families PAC asserts that the plan is much more than what its supporters claim. The PAC says that the plan itself calls for a host of radical progressive reforms that go far beyond the scope of fighting racism and bullying.
“No parent wants a child to be bullied or to experience acts of racism. The disagreement over CCAP is not whether bullying or racism should be addressed and dealt with appropriately, but whether CCAP, an overreaching and highly political plan seeking to indoctrinate children according to extremely liberal beliefs, is the answer,” the PAC’s website says.
Yeager’s victory gives opponents of the diversity plan and Critical Race Theory a 4-3 advantage on the school board, the result of a debate that has roiled the community of Southlake for about a year. In May, Republicans swept a host of local elections as residents, motivated over the rise of Critical Race Theory-related issues in the school system, rose up in opposition to school administrators pushing the diversity plan. As The Daily Wire reported at the time:
Republicans blew out Democrats by a roughly 70% to 30% margin to take two spots and control of the Carroll Independent School District board, two city council seats, and the Southlake mayor’s seat. The election results, finalized Sunday, showed a ballooning voter turnout about 3-times larger than past local elections.
The landslide for conservative Republicans came nine months after progressives on the school board introduced a plan to instate critical race theory in the local school curriculum and force educators to take diversity training and other so-called anti-racism courses.
The election “was a referendum on those who put personal politics and divisive philosophies ahead of Carroll ISD students and families, and their common American heritage and Texas values,” Southlake attorney Hannah Smith, who beat local business consultant Ed Hernandez for a spot on the school board, told NBC News in a statement.
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