In response to Roy Schimelpfenig’s letter, “We are not a racist nation” (our Readers’ View, Jan 4):
We are a small study group that includes retired educators and parents. We want to correct a few of the many false statements he makes.
He says, “American history … has vanished from public schools.” In Washington state, U.S. History is taught in grades eight, 11 and 12. State learning standards for history are listed under Social Studies in the Washington State Learning Standards (See the “Social Studies Learning Standards” page at www.k12.wa.us). Graduation from a Washington high school requires one year of U.S. history in addition to other requirements.
He also states that the “1619 Project … rewrites America’s past.” Understanding the legacy of slavery does not rewrite America’s past but adds to our knowledge. The 1619 Project is not a Marxist theory.
We ask what evidence he has to suggest that teachers will teach every white child that they are racist and turn children of color into victims.
He then accuses teachers’ unions and school boards of “growing activists for their party’s personal use.” Teachers’ unions are not affiliated with any political party.
We urge readers to seek reliable, trusted sources of information, such as the Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction and your local school district.