Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Op-Ed — Cd'A schools: IFF accusations 'baseless, inflammatory'

| June 18, 2021 1:00 AM

Editor's note: This is the Coeur d'Alene School District's response to two public records requests from the Idaho Freedom Foundation.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Today, Coeur d’Alene Public Schools responded to a pair of public records requests from the Idaho Freedom Foundation, a political organization based in Boise.

The group asked the District to provide materials used for “antiracism or Culturally Responsive” teacher or staff training, and “classroom curricula, assignments, materials implementing Culturally Responsiveness,” for the 2020-21 school year. A second request asked the district to provide teacher training materials that include “culturally responsive, culturally relevant, antiracism, bias, implicit bias, or anti bias” for the 2020-21 school year.

In accordance with Idaho Public Records Law, the District conducted a thorough review of its records during the final seven days of the school year. The District informed the IFF that no such records exist with respect to teacher or staff training, curricula for implementing “Cultural Responsiveness,” or use of curricular materials such as “Learning for Justice!”

The Idaho Constitution states that it is the duty of the Legislature to maintain a system of public schools. The director of the IFF, however, has stated, “I don’t think government should be in the education business.” This same group recently posted an online commentary falsely stating that the Coeur d’Alene district has adopted “critical race theory” as part of its equity framework. These are baseless and inflammatory assertions, and they serve only to diminish the work of our dedicated team of teachers and instructional leaders.

At Coeur d’Alene Public Schools, we affirm our commitment to educating each and every child, and to removing any barriers that would prevent a student from receiving the best education possible. We believe each student deserves powerful learning in every subject, at every age, and in every learning environment. Further, we believe that each student can achieve at high levels, regardless of individual differences, gender, ethnicity, language, ability, or socioeconomic status.

The District uses a clear, rigorous and transparent process for developing and adopting curriculum. All written curriculum aligns with the Idaho State Content Standards, which are adopted by the Idaho Legislature. All written curriculum and supporting resources are brought before our elected Board of Trustees, put out to the public for a 30-day review and comment period, then brought back to the Board for final adoption. We advertise these reviews on our website and social media, and we encourage the public to submit comments so their voices are heard.

We will continue to provide our community accurate information on any aspect of our strategic plan, curriculum, instruction and staff training programs. We are available to answer questions about any aspect of these.

Curriculum maps are shared on our website at https://www.cdaschools.org/domain/283.