Letter to the Editor: We Should Not Be Encouraging Tribalism in Schools 


Chronicle columnist Michael Wagar recently commented on critical race theory (CRT) labeling it a “red herring pushed by the Right.”

He expressed his reliance on State Public Education Superintendent Chris Reykdal’s claim that the dispute over CRT is “manufactured outrage for political purposes.” Wagar then complimented the Chehalis School Board for its “powerful statement on the issue.”

Unfortunately, Mr. Wagar apparently misunderstood the Chehalis declaration.

As previously reported in The Chronicle’s online edition (see page Main 7), the Chehalis School District was complying with a state government mandate. It acted under compulsion. To the extent possible, it seems to have made clear that the Chehalis School District would not be engaging in partisan instruction and certainly not the CRT philosophy that people should be judged on the color of their skin.

As grandparents of children living in a “woke” school district in Oregon, we can assure Mr. Wagar that CRT is being taught in public schools. Thankfully, not in the Chehalis District, at least not yet.

The curriculum in Beaverton, Oregon, teaches children to “get angry” and that their white classmates are “privileged.” This is racism pure and simple, dividing people “by the color of their skin not the content of their character.”

Until recently, public schools’ principal purpose was providing students the skills necessary to better themselves. It was the way for all children to have a shot at success.

We are in the process of destroying that system. Those parents who can will simply opt out of public education. Pay close attention to what is happening with home and private schooling in Centralia if you want to understand a revolt in progress. This doesn’t need to happen and will be significantly damaging to those who most need excellent public education. Being able to rise above the condition of your parents has been a core value in our country. The loss of that opportunity is the beginning of the end of what our nation has been.

We should not be encouraging tribalism. 

Reaching a color-blind society in which each person is judged by their character not their race was recognized by Martin Luther King, Jr. It is his words we should heed.


Rene and Susan Remund

Lewis County