Utah School Walks Back Letting Parents Opt Their Kids Out of Black History Month Following Backlash

Illustration for article titled Utah School Walks Back Letting Parents Opt Their Kids Out of Black History Month Following Backlash
Photo: GUNDAM_Ai (Shutterstock)

White people love to ask “Why is everything so political these days?” while proceeding to make everything political. Take, for instance, a group of parents in Utah who wanted to pull their kids from Black History Month lessons. After briefly offering parents an option to opt-out, the Utah school has now walked back that decision.

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According to the Associated Press, Micah Hirokawa, director of the Maria Montessori Academy in North Ogden, Utah, posted to the school’s Facebook page on Friday that parents would be able “to exercise their civil rights to not participate in Black History Month at the school.” Predictably, there was public backlash to this decision, because anyone who’s been paying at least a little bit of attention to, well, everything, would know this wouldn’t fly.

Betty Sawyer, head of the Ogden chapter of the NAACP, reached out to the school on Saturday to talk to them about why they decided to make the curriculum about Black history optional. The post was also met with backlash by other parents at the school, according to the Hill.

Rebecca Bennett, a parent at the school, reportedly wrote underneath the Facebook post that she was “appalled to see the form sent out that allows parents to opt their kids out of this and to hear that this is all because some parents have requested it.” By Saturday evening the post was eventually deleted from the school’s page.

“We regret that after receiving requests, an opt-out form was sent out concerning activities planned during this month of celebration,” a statement from Hirokawa and the school’s board of directors said.

“We are grateful that families that initially had questions and concerns have willingly come to the table to resolve any differences and at this time no families are opting out of our planned activities and we have removed this option,” the statement said. The school didn’t say how many parents attempted the opt-out, nor provided what their reasons were for doing so.

Let’s be real, I don’t think we have to think too hard about the why though. The fact that these folks are offended at the fact that Martin Luther King Jr. existed is kinda funny to me, because I wouldn’t doubt that at least one of those parents has written something to the effect of “God, people are so sensitive these days,” on Facebook.

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The folks that love to talk about folks being triggered and rail against “cancel culture,” are now triggered by history and trying to cancel it. What a goddamn mess.

Hirokawa, who is of Asian descent, noted in the statement that the request from parents “deeply saddens and disappoints me.”

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“We should not shield our children from the history of our Nation, the mistreatment of its African American citizens, and the bravery of civil rights leaders, but should educate them about it,” Hirokawa said.

AP notes that data from the Utah State Board of Education revealed that only three of the academy’s 322 students are Black and 70 percent of the student population are white.

The stylin', profilin', limousine riding, jet flying, wheelin' and dealin' nerd of The Root.

DISCUSSION

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Why these so-called patriots don’t get that “black history” IS American history, in its purest form is beyond me? This country was built on the backs and forged in the blood of people of African descent.

Like, I honestly don’t get why “opting-out” of history was even presented as option for the 70% white students at this school who have no reason to think about race any other time of the year?