An unintended consequence of the Covid pandemic lockdowns is that parents suddenly were forced to become more involved with their children’s education. Many parents were shocked to learn that the public schools today are completely different from the institutions they attended in their youth.
This discovery has led to a surge in parent advocacy and massive increase in attendance at public school board meetings. To also add fuel to the fire, mandatory mask mandates increased the division between parents and administrators.
This situation has resulted in some tense confrontations.
Some interactions have even turned physical over the mask mandates. The combination of the stress of the lockdowns coupled with parents feeling like they do not have a choice with regards to parenting their children has raised the temperature for everyone involved. As the mandates wind down, parents are shifting their focus to Critical Race Theory and the teaching of transgenderism in schools.
Florida has become ground zero on the gender issue with Governor DeSantis signing the Parental Rights in Education bill which bans teaching sex and gender topics to children in kindergarten through third grade. Parents who support the bill represent the viewpoint of a sizable portion of adults in the United States. It is a sign of the times that not wanting teachers to have sexual conversations with first graders has somehow become controversial but here we are.
The acrimony between parents and administrators is at an all-time high, while public schools’ performance is crumbling. Parents are frustrated at school boards being more interested in teaching children there are multiple genders than performing their normative functions of teaching reading, writing, and arithmetic.
In many districts across the country parents have begun to run for school board positions themselves to solve the problem. In notoriously progressive San Francisco three liberal school board members were recalled. When the Golden Gate City starts recalling progressive candidates you know the rest of the country is in serious trouble. It is difficult to tell if school board meetings will smooth out, but scenes of acrimony and discord look to be with us for the near future.