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UCLA Education Expertise Looks at Critical Race Theory

A report released in January by UCLA Professor of Education John Rogers and co-author Mica Pollock, a professor of education studies at UC San Diego, surveyed nearly 300 educators and 21 equity officers, and analyzed 10,000 news articles about Critical Race Theory (CRT) between September 2020 and August 2021. A majority of survey respondents reported efforts in their districts to restrict or ban lessons on race and efforts to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion.

“We saw a lot of fear and descriptions of self censorship, as well as administrators cautioning educators to tiptoe around certain topics,” said Pollock in a recent EdWeek article. “We found folks who had been experiencing very personalized harassment, particularly as administrators of color working at the district level.”

“People in those local communities that have experienced dramatic demographic change, have to grapple with what it means to tell stories of America’s present and America’s past and America’s future in new sorts of ways,” Professor Rogers said in the article. “And I think that’s challenging to do. And so I think, in those communities, when they don’t feel comfortable with how stories are being told, they are vulnerable to hearing messages about conflict, and then responding in problematic ways.”

During 2020-2021, nearly 900 school districts across the United States, representing 35% of all K-12 students, have been affected by local district versions of an intentional campaign to restrict or “ban” what opponents have caricatured as K12 “Critical Race Theory.”

Here is a round-up of UCLA expertise on CRT in national press:

Study shows wide-speed conflict over critical race theory in schools 
San Francisco Chronicle, Jan. 19

They fought critical race theory. Now they’re focusing on ‘curriculum transparency’ 
NBC News, Jan. 20

Study: Anti-CRT campaigns impact districts with 35% of nation’s students
K-12 Dive, Jan. 21 

Efforts to Ban Critical Race Theory Now Restrict Teaching for a Third of America’s Kids.  
Education Week, Jan. 27

Republicans are trying to suppress more than votes
The Atlantic, Jan. 28

The GOP Dials Up Its Attacks on Critical Race Theory
The Nation, Jan. 28

Divide over how to teach about race plays out more in school districts with shifting demographics, study finds
CNN, Feb. 1 

Congressional Democrats Target Bans on Teaching About Racism in Schools
U.S. News & World Report, Feb. 2

Critical race theory thrust into spotlight by misinformation
ABC News, Feb. 6

Representation of Social Groups in U.S. Educational Materials and Why it Matters
National Education Policy Center, Feb. 8