California parents watched for the past two years as the poor leadership in the California public schools system failed students academically, socially, mentally and emotionally. Parents were forced to work from home or quit their jobs in 2020 while the demands by the teachers unions were met keeping them all employed. The teachers union president from the Coachella Valley district claimed that when parents pushed for schools to reopen, teachers were too “exhausted” to go back.
Press play to hear a narrated version of this story, presented by AudioHopper.
What an insult to every working family out there that also lived through the COVID-19 pandemic and were also exhausted from having to adjust their lives not only to the new world around us, but also to the demands of the teachers union. Parents are angry that their children are being used as human shields by the unions across the nation all for an extra few bucks in the union coffers.
During 2020, Jonathan Zachreson led one of the very first parent groups to push back on these tyrannical demands. Jonathan was able to unite parents across the state. Parents felt safety in numbers and looked to other parents who were complete strangers for guidance and support. They began to cheer each other on after speaking at their school board meetings or to the media. When parents realized local media was ignoring their stories of advocacy, parents were forced to become their own media by spreading awareness of the failing schools and the corrupt teachers unions vigorously through their social media platforms. In echoing frustrations, these parents gave heart and community to other parents who felt alone..
As other parent groups formed, those small echo chambers became a resilient army. They were then organizing rallies, demanding a seat at the table, calling on the legislature and local elected officials to put a stop to the nonsensical legislation and resolutions. Parents continued to expose controversial curriculum after seeing what was being taught on Zoom in their own homes.
In demanding transparency from local school board members, parents were gaslighted and labeled as “domestic terrorists.” Several teachers’ unions which jumped on the “defund the police” bandwagon, ironically stacked every school board meeting with law enforcement for their own protection and to intimidate parents. That didn’t slow parents down. The momentum to take back schools kept increasing, though at a slower pace than desired.
Parents decided that if the school board members were going to simply ignore parents and comply with the teachers’ unions insidious demands, it was time to remove those board members and replace them with parents. Thus began a slate of school board recalls across the state from Desert Sands in the Coachella Valley, Corona- Norco, Orange County to San Francisco.
What we have witnessed is a parent revolution. It is a party in and of itself and almost better organized. It isn’t particularly ideological and has brought together Democrats, Republicans, independents, all those among all races and income levels. These parent groups are here to stay.
With midterm elections right around the corner, parents are stepping up and throwing their hat into the electoral ring. Parents are running for school board and supporting and endorsing other parents. Their cause is their children who have been the collateral damage across the state of California.
Parents aren’t stopping at the local school board level. The current incumbent, California Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tony Thurmond has continued to back the teachers unions and their demands, putting the students dead last. California is rated in 50th place when it comes to literacy in the entire country. The California schools are now lowering the bar for students in the name of equity
What they fail to realize is that when lowering the bar in the name of equity, they are saying that the minority students are not smart enough to get ahead, which is discrediting the potential of all minority students. Some of the most gifted students in California are in fact minority students. Many minority students challenge themselves and deserve the highest AP classes. They’ve earned it. This is setting every student back. Parents also disapprove of this.
California parents are voicing their needs and are wanting to be heard. Lance Christensen stepped up to the challenge to run against Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond to “add parents back in the education equation.” It’s a breath of fresh air for parents. Lance is married and a father of five school aged children. He has been a strong advocate for parents across the state for decades. Parents, and educators who just want to teach, are noticing Lance and endorsing him to be that voice at the top.
Let’s be real – parents are broke. Parents can’t afford to fund campaigns that are so crucial when it comes to children. Parents really need the monetary efforts to make this happen. This is where wealthy donors can step in to help parents get the seat at the table we desperately need. Going up against the teachers union machine is half the battle; funding our candidate, Lance Christensen, to be able to get there is our challenge.
Moms and dads are fighting for a voice so that what we’ve seen happen in the past two years, never happens again. We have the power to change the framework of public education, and by fully taking advantage of this opportunity here in California, we must get Lance Christensen elected as State Superintendent of Public Instruction. Please consider donating and supporting the parents’ choice in this fight for our children. We need donors to get us through the finish line.
This is not an endorsement of any candidate.
- The Growing Parent Revolution is a Resilient Army - April 18, 2022
- School Choice Wins in U.S. Supreme Court Could Impact California Efforts - December 15, 2021