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A Texas School District’s ‘Racial Equity Committee’ Is Blocking The Public From Watching Its Meetings

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  • A school district’s “Racial Equity Committee” has prevented members of the public from attending its previously public meetings for the first time since the governing body was created in 2016, according to reports.
  • A disabled Fort Worth, Texas, resident who tried to attend a Fort Worth Independent School District (FWISD) “Racial Equity Committee” (REC) meeting on Thursday was told he had to pull his vehicle “off of the district property” after trying to park in the parking lot of the school hosting the meeting.
  • “They don’t like the light of truth that we have shown on them, they want to lurk back to the shadows to hide while they waste our money and divide our children, our city,” FWISD mother Hollie Plemmons told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “Equity has not helped the students, it’s only made those in the business of equity rich. If that money had been spent on extra teachers to help the kids struggling to read just imagine how much better off the students and scores would be.”

A school district’s “Racial Equity Committee” has prevented members of the public from attending its previously public meetings for the first time since the governing body was created in 2016, according to reports.

A disabled Fort Worth, Texas, resident who tried to attend a Fort Worth Independent School District (FWISD) “Racial Equity Committee” (REC) meeting on Thursday was told he had to pull his vehicle “off of the district property” after trying to park in the parking lot of the school hosting the meeting.

The REC said its meetings wouldn’t be open to the public, and it said it wasn’t required to post anything about meeting times or locations because a quorum of school board trustees wouldn’t be at the meeting, so the committee isn’t bound by board policy or the Texas Open Meetings Act, CBS DFW reported.

When the local resident asked if he could attend the REC meetings, a school official responded by asking if his car was broken down. In response, the resident explained that he is handicapped and again asked to attend the meeting. Then, the school official told him he could not because the meetings are closed to the public. She then told him that she would give him “a couple minutes” to move his vehicle off school property.

Carlos Turcios, an activist who spent four years on FWISD’s REC and is now an education activist fighting against CRT in the district told the Daily Caller News Foundation that he was alarmed by the lack of transparency FWISD and its REC have shown the public.

“If they are preaching the ‘truth’ why are they afraid to be public?” he said. “Parents have the right to know what’s happening.”

CRT holds that America is fundamentally racist, yet it teaches people to view every social interaction and person in terms of race. Its adherents pursue “antiracism” through the end of merit, objective truth and the adoption of race-based policies.

“There have been 4 Racial Equity Committee meetings this school year, I have attended all 4,” FWISD mother Hollie Plemmons told the DCNF. “Quinton Phillips, the chair of this committee, said they have very important work to do at these meetings but parents attending has caused a ‘circus’ at the meetings.”

“I have all 4 meetings recorded,” Plemmons said. “No circus was brought by the parents.”

At the last meeting on Feb. 3, Plemmons said parents and community members were invited to come and speak, but it started “to go off the rails due to lack of preparation by Quinton,” she told the DCNF.

“We asked for the rules multiple times … but never got an answer of anything more than ‘we are just going to have a conversation, no time limits,’” she said. “We show up to the meeting to find a lottery system is being held for who gets to speak, only 20 were going to be allowed to speak for 3 minutes each,” allegedly contradicting what parents were previously told.

“He (Phillips) also called the police on us for recording the open meeting like we have always done before without issue, we refused to stop recording as it is our right under the law,” she added.

Then, the REC announced its plans to close the meeting to the public, blaming public interference, Plemmons told the DCNF.

“They don’t like the light of truth that we have shown on them, they want to lurk back to the shadows to hide while they waste our money and divide our children, our city,” Plemmons said. “Equity has not helped the students, it’s only made those in the business of equity rich. If that money had been spent on extra teachers to help the kids struggling to read just imagine how much better off the students and scores would be.”

Former REC co-chair, Norma Garcia-Lopez, resigned in December 2021 after admitting she left profane voicemails for and doxxed parents who opposed her policies. Garcia-Lopez shared parent information and encouraged others to call parents out for ideological beliefs she disfavored.

FWISD gained national attention in November 2021, when a pro-CRT parent told attendees at a Texas school board meeting that he has 1,000 soldiers “locked and loaded” for those who “dare” question the need for race-based curricula.

At multiple equity forums held by the district and its REC, school administrators have openly admitted to teaching CRT.

“The fact is there are so many … things, policies, practices, procedures, programmings that we have that have been deep … in our system so long that when we really dissect it through a Critical Race Theory lens, is one of the lens that we use, we see how these inequities come up and show up,” Jonathan Pérez, a former “Equity Specialist” at FWISD said during an August 2020 equity training session for teachers, according to video footage obtained by the DCNF.

At the district’s Equity Summit in December 2021, educator and racial equity consultant Altheria Caldera gave a presentation where she told attendees they should “never be embarrassed to be antiracist,” saying it is “totally okay to be woke,” according to a video of the event shared with the DCNF.

“They don’t want the rest of the public to know what a scam on our children and waste of money equity is,” Plemmons concluded. “Equity is a business, not a movement. Don’t be fooled.”

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