She says it was yet another example of a racist incident at Park Hill South High School in suburban Kansas City, Missouri.
“She was very upset about it. My daughter is Ethiopian,” Stutterheim told CNN this week.
Her daughter faced racism directly, Stutterheim says, and “the more she talked about it, the more upset she was.”
Stutterheim did what any concerned parent would do and contacted the school to find out what had happened.
What she found was that an increasingly familiar scenario was unfolding at her child’s school. In the United States, there are two diametrically opposed conversations about race going on at the same time. In one, some white parents tell school leaders that lessons about race make white students feel bad. And in the other, there is the racism that is really happening in schools.
“Going forward, we have two options. We can respond, or we can respond. We choose to respond, to create a long-term solution that best meets the needs of our students, staff, families and of our community. “
Park Hill is no different.
At a recent school board meeting, Sally Roller echoed a view shared by many white parents.
“I would like to address critical race theory, sometimes referred to as culturally appropriate teaching. History is what it is whether we like it or not, and should not be rewritten,” she said. . “I am concerned that this will cause further division and racism by making others seen by skin color rather than other individual personal qualities of the person.”
Critical Race Theory is not taught in the K-12 curriculum.
A national debate
Nicole Price is the CEO of Lively Paradox Professional Training and Coaching. She was hired at schools in Missouri and Kansas. She says she usually gets a phone call after something racist has happened. White school leaders are often in shock.
“‘Am I surprised? “This is the question I get the most,” she told CNN.
She said she was disappointed but never surprised.
“I spend my life trying to get education front and center because that’s how we know we can help solve some of these issues.”
Today, Price’s job is harder than ever. After a Missouri school district hired her to lead a session, the school board received threats, she says.
She had a driver and requested additional security. Price was going to school to do a presentation on “Radical Empathy”.
While Republican lawmakers across the United States have fueled debate over critical race theory and the inclusive agenda, Democratic lawmakers like State Senator Cindy Holscher are pushing back in Kansas.
“I think the (racist) incidents have increased, and I say this because of what I hear from my children. That the environment is a bit more tense in our schools. There has been more hatred over the course. the last two years. “
This Kansas City school district isn’t the only one wondering how to talk about race and racism.
“We have banned Critical Race Theory and any program or training that teaches the United States or Iowa to be inherently racist or sexist,” Reynolds said.
An increase in incidents
The school condemned the image, but three weeks earlier a father had condemned efforts to expand racial education in schools in Olathe.
“I am here to voice my opposition to DEI, Critical Race Theory or its derivatives that are being educated, indoctrinated or even suggested in the school district,” John Highfill said at a board meeting. from Olathe public school last month.
“Every piece of this propaganda that will reveal itself in the false doctrines of white frailty, white rage, white privilege and the like is just that. Wrong.”
Holscher has received emails in the past two months from white parents complaining that they fear their children will learn to hate their white skin.
But Holscher says “we don’t have CRTs in our schools. Second, that’s not at all what happens when it comes to any kind of teaching about teaching kids not to like their white skin. , that just doesn’t happen. “
Parents like Julie Stutterheim believe her peers need to be aware of the reality of what is really going on in schools.
“I watched my white daughter, my oldest daughter, grow up and not go through the things that my younger daughter has to go through. So it’s really hard to see.”