The debate over whether or not to include CRT in public education has raged across Pennsylvania in 2021. Many school districts, associations of school counselors, teachers unions, and other groups have defended the practice, while parents have fought back. (source: https://www.wgal.com/article/teaching-critical-race-theory-pennsylvania-schools/37033677) One district had a lesson in fifth grade on “freeing black communist Angela Davis;” another had homework for parents on “decentering whiteness.” (source: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/the-worst-examples-of-critical-race-theory-in-schools/ar-BB1g2M6l) The State Department of Education states on its website its goal: Creating Inclusive Schools: Racial and Ethnic Identity. A bill banning CRT statewide in Pennsylvania has sat in the Education Committee in the House of Representatives since June 2021. (https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/billInfo/billInfo.cfm?sYear=2021&sInd=0&body=H&type=B&bn=1532) The state higher education association has created many CRT initiatives for its colleges across the state.
Some school districts have adopted resolutions banning CRT from their classrooms. (source: https://www.meadvilletribune.com/news/penncrest-crt-policy-faces-first-amendment-concerns/article_320c9aee-2b92-11ec-a961-8fa41dd331a0.html) Some districts have adopted resolutions opposing the bill banning CRT statewide. The bill has failed to advance out of committee. The Pennsylvania School Counselors Association is promoting the controversial Critical Race Theory (CRT) for its members across the state. (https://legalinsurrection.com/2021/07/school-counselors-association-in-pennsylvania-backs-crt-in-classrooms/) The Pennsylvania Department of Education promotes a long list of radical resources for teaching race in K-12 classrooms. (source: https://www.education.pa.gov/Schools/safeschools/equityandinclusion/Pages/RacialEthnic.aspx) The Equity and Inclusion page has resources for equitable practices, gender identity, LGBTQ, and other so-called marginalized populations. (source: https://www.education.pa.gov/Schools/safeschools/equityandinclusion/Pages/default.aspx)
The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) has adopted a more proactive plan to implement Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives across all its campuses. It will be hosting a DEI Summit in November 2021.
The State System and its universities are committed to cultivating diverse, equitable, and inclusive environments that allow all members of the State System community to thrive. The position of Vice Chancellor and Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer was established in August 2020 to engage institutional and system leaders to develop, implement, and evaluate outcomes-based strategies that address inequities in all areas including but not limited to student access and achievement; faculty and staff recruitment and development; and campus receptivity. The work will be grounded in, will build upon, and will elevate the promising initiatives and thought leadership already occurring across the universities. (source: https://www.passhe.edu/News/Pages/Releases.aspx?q=2020-07-09-Vice-Chancellor-Diversity-Equity-Inclusion)