Stafford County School Board denounces Critical Race Theory, 1619 Project, preferred pronouns

The Stafford County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously (6-0) Tuesday night to approve a resolution that denounces the teaching of Critical Race Theory, the 1619 project and requiring students to give their preferred pronouns. 

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Several members of the board say hearing complaints from parents, students and constituents about CRT being taught in schools and teachers asking students about their preferred pronouns is what led to the proposed resolution. 

"State law says that you cannot ask a student their pronoun, you cannot require them to give it," Board Supervisor Gary Snellings said. "It says if the student or the students parent goes to a teacher and asks that a preferred pronoun be applied to them or their child a teacher must do that." 

Snellings, who proposed the resolution, says he’s been getting backlash for it. 

"I personally have been called a racist because of this and I resent it," Snellings said. "This is nothing more than following state law and nothing more than protecting our children." 

Snellings says the resolution does not mean funding will be taken away from schools, rather gives the board the authority to review and deny funding for any project promoting critical race theory, the 1619 project or requiring students to give their pronoun.  

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"If the school board wants to do what Fairfax County did and bring in a guy that is quote an expert in CRT…and pay him $20,000, if our school board decides to do that guess what this resolution will give us the authority to deduct that 20,000 dollars at the next budget time." Snellings said. "It does not give us the authority to reduce school funding.

There was a difference of opinion people who spoke during the public comment portion of the meeting. 

"Critical Race Theory is an umbrella term right now it is being thrown around without real understanding of its meaning." One person said. 

"Critical Race Theory and the crusade against American history is toxic," Another person said. "It’s an ideological poison that if not removed will dissolve the civic bonds that bind us."  

Others who spoke out during the meeting weren’t happy to see the resolution including two separate issues.

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"The fact that you’ve included pronouns in critical race theory revision is ridiculous to say the least," One person said. "Asking for somebody’s pronouns isn’t just common courtesy to anybody it’s also making sure that people feel safe." 

In a statement sent to FOX 5 DC, Stafford County Public Schools said: 

"Stafford County Public Schools does not teach, nor do we promote, the philosophy of Critical Race Theory (CRT) in any of our schools. The Stafford County Public Schools K12 History and Social Science Program is based on the Virginia Standards of Learning and the accompanying History and Social Science Curriculum Framework."