In 2020, Lower Merion Schools in Pennyslvania included a controversial children’s book, Not My Idea: A Book about Whiteness, by Anastacia Higginbotham, in its classroom teaching.
A whistleblower contacted the Pennsylvania Office of Civil Rights about the book and was directed to the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s website on “Racial and Ethnic Identity,” including a “Racial Equity Toolkit,” “Teaching About Race, Racism, and Police Violence,” “White Privilege,” and “Teaching Young Children about Race,” among others. Parents have questioned school system officials about critical race theory in its curriculum and programs.
The whistleblower wrote, “Giving young children the idea that their racial identity is historically sinful or wrong is unconscionable, even if it’s couched in the idea of “promoting racial justice.” It feels vengeful and exploitative. I can see young kids feeling a great deal of anxiety over these texts.”