Nov 15, 2022

The 'Red Wave' Hit School Board Elections Across the Country

A reckoning is coming in public schools in the wake of conservative parental rights victories.
The 'Red Wave' Hit School Board Elections Across the Country
Photo by CDC / Unsplash

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School boards turn red: Republican school board candidates won dozens of seats in this year’s elections, flipping school boards in Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina, New Jersey, Maryland, and Florida to a conservative majority.

Why it matters: With school board majorities, Republican members will be able to shut down progressive curricula and policies. These midterm victories show that focusing on culture war issues, like progressive ideology in public schools, is a rewarding practice for GOP campaigns.

How they won: Many candidates capitalized on the rising “parental rights” movement, campaigning against critical race theory and progressive gender ideology in schools. Conservative grassroots organizations such as Moms for Liberty and the 1776 Project PAC made hundreds of endorsements and spent millions of dollars in school board races. In Florida, Ron DeSantis became the first governor in the state’s history to openly endorse several school board candidates, most of which won.

Big picture: More and more schools have been exposed for pushing progressive ideas onto children in the last two years, often without parents’ knowledge or consent, inspiring protests, lack of trust, and mass departures from the public school system. Republicans have responded by calling out woke ideology and indoctrination by name and proposing policies that prioritize parental input and consent.

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