Report on the Northern Virginia Board of Education hearing concerning the new revised history standards.

Event: Virginia Board of Education (BoE) hearing concerning the new revised history standards.
Date of Event: 3/14/23

● Event discovered through NoVA labor connections and the AFL-CIO newsletter
● Event had 2 distinct parts: Rally before the hearing and the hearing itself
● Rally before hearing
○ Put together by a coalition of labor and community organizations

■ Unions
● VEA, UFCW, IBT, IBEW, various rank-and-file

■ Community Organizations
● Fairfax NAACP, Hamkae Center (Asian American advocacy group), loose groupings of local students
○ Several Speakers during rally

■ All iterated the point of opposing the newly revised standards for
whitewashing American history
● Hearing
○ Located at the George Washington Presidential Library in Mount Vernon
○ Hearing intended for solely public comment, no feedback from the BoE was
○ In total: 98 speakers over the course of several hours
○ Vast majority were teachers and parents
○ Vast majority were opposed to the new revisions

■ Many cited the whitewashed content, many had more practical concerns
● Amount of standards crammed into one year
● Heavy focus on memorization, less on critical thinking
● Lack of transparency on the authorship of the new curriculum
○ Heard from many students and young people concerned about revisions ■ Students from high schools all over NoVA
○ Unions concerned over the removal of labor movement history

■ Reps from the IBT, IBEW, UFCW, VEA, AFT, and UA all spoke on the
lack of labor history

■ Concerns over the rise of the labor movement, treatment of the new deal,
and the positve portrayal of free market capitalism discussed
○ Small contingent of supporters for the new standards
■ Perhaps 15 out of 98 speakers (liberal estimate)
■ Very few actual parents or teachers
● Mainly retirees, “concerned citizens”, representative from conservative organizations

■ Recieved lukewarm response ● Party-aspect
○ Linked up with previous labor contacts
○ Brief conversation with Hamkae Center and the Fairfax NAACP

■ CPUSA Emphasized the importance of labor history and telling the whole story of the USA

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