Politics

Diversity plan opponents win control of school board in Southlake, Texas

A conservative candidate won the special election for the seventh seat of the Southlake school board, giving conservatives an advantage, which will allow them to do away with a debated diversity plan.

After a school board member resigned this summer, the Carroll Independent School District (CISD) Board had a seat that needed to be filled. The race was between Stephanie Williams and Andrew Yeager, a conservative backed by the Southlake Families PAC. Yeager won, taking 65.95% of the vote.

Yeager is a regional ad sales executive for NBCUniversal- owned TV stations and was campaigning against the district’s plans to change curriculum and add diversity training for teachers and students. Williams is a former teacher who supported the diversity plan.

In July 2020, CISD proposed a plan to introduce the Cultural Competency Action Plan, which would address issues related to race, gender, and sexuality in the classroom. The plan claimed that it would “strengthen expectations of students” in the district and “emphasize cultural awareness,” over the course of five years. It was set to be approved the following month, but was ultimately postponed until 2021 due to pandemic-related issues and searching for and hiring a new superintendent. 

The Southlake Families PAC backed two other candidates, both of whom won school board seats in May. In Yeager’s race, the PAC contributed $37,000 from September to October. The PAC describes itself as being “unapologetically rooted in Judeo-Christian values.”

The push for the diversity plan in CISD came after a video surfaced of racial slurs being chanted by students in a Southlake classroom. The Southlake Families PAC is being replicated in other cities in the U.S. where families are fighting against diversity plans and “critical race theory”.

ARTICLE: RITA VOGT

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: NBC NEWS

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