Hampered by leftist ideologies, Virginia Lt. Gov. Winsome Sears (R) believes America’s public school system has risen to the level of a “national security crisis.”
Sears told Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures” host Maria Bartiromo declining educational standards and a hyper-focus on issues like critical race theory have caused the U.S. educational system to fall behind American adversaries around the world.
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“This is a national security crisis,” said the lieutenant governor. “When so many of our children are not learning, we’re in trouble. We need STEM education. Heavens, we need children who can just read and write. How about that? And add one plus one. We don’t have that.”
She went on to say the U.S. is “losing to the Chinas [of the world], to the Russias.”
“Even Estonia is beating us in math,” Sears added. “In science and technology, we’re losing. We need to have education up here now.”
In a 2020 survey from the Pew Research Center, American voters didn’t even list education in their top 12 list of concerns. But one year later, voters in Virginia’s gubernatorial race said in a Monmouth University poll education ranked in their top three concerns.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has also made education a focus of his administration. Earlier this month, he lauded the Sunshine State as “the place where woke goes to die.”
“Obviously, in the classroom, we’ve battled a lot of ideologies,” said DeSantis. “What I’ve said is the state of Florida is the place where woke goes to die. We are not going to let this state descend into some type of woke dumpster fire. We’re going to be following common sense, we’re going to be following facts.”
The reorientation of Americans’ concerns is due, at least in part, to watchdog groups like Libs of TikTok, known on social media for exposing leftist ideologies pushed by educators in the public school system, from issues like critical race theory to progressive gender norms.
All of this comes amid another crisis — a severe lack of teachers around the country.
Rebecca Pringle, president of the National Education Association, the largest teachers’ union in the U.S., said there is a shortage of about 300,000 teachers nationwide.
“We have a crisis in the number of students who are going into the teaching profession and the number of teachers who are leaving it,” she told ABC News. “But, of course, as with everything else, the pandemic just made it worse.”
More than the pandemic, DeSantis thinks wokeism is to blame.
“I don’t think these schools have proven to be effective,” he argued. “I think what you do is you get people that have proficiency in core academic disciplines, then you have them go in. But trying to teach them at certain schools of education, I think that’s been overtaken by ideology. I think that’s a turn-off for a lot of people.”
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