Springfield Public Schools board member appears to explain that she does not care about student achievement; pushes to implement racial equity and LGBTQ issues into curriculum
Springfield Public Schools has a member of the Board of Education who appears to place a significant focus on pushing controversial political issues and incorporating those ideas into the curriculum taught to students. Board member Shurita Thomas-Tate has publicly discussed implementing racial equity and gender ideologies into curricula taught to students on numerous occasions.
In a September 7, 2021, board meeting, the Board of Education members argued about meeting procedures and student achievement. During this time, board member Maryam Mohammadkhani stated: “Put me down as someone who thinks student achievement is the most important thing.” Shurita Thomas-Tate then responded: “You’re the only one in here. You’re the only one in here. No one else cares.” [Time Stamp: 2:30:54]
In a board meeting on September 6, 2022, Shurita Thomas-Tate stated that the American flag and Pledge of Allegiance both constitute a “political statement.” In the discussion, she mentioned not allowing employees to make political statements in classrooms and moved the conversation to discussing how she thinks LGBTQ issues should be part of classrooms. She then claimed that the American flag and Pledge of Allegiance are political. She stated:
I question what does a personal opinion – what does constitute a personal opinion and what does constitute a political statement. I think we can may or may not agree that maybe the American flag can be one of those or the Pledge of Allegiance or the Confederate flag. And maybe once upon a time these may have been apolitical symbols but we are not in that time anymore and they do come with a political agenda. And so we have to recognize that. And are we going to remove all of them because of that? [Time Stamp: 1:42:30]
Shurita Thomas-Tate’s public comments on social media also include commentary about schools. Below are two examples:
On May 28, 2020, she shared a tweet that linked to an article titled “How White Women Use Themselves as Instruments of Terror.”
On June 23, 2020, she tweeted in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and removing police officers from schools.