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  • Writer's pictureErin B.

Links Between CRT and the CDA School District

Erin's Note:

I saw this article on the Kootenai County Republican Women's Federated website and thought it was important to share it broadly. The argument that Rep. Paul Amador, CDA School District Superintendent Shon Hocker and others that say there is NOT critical race theory, social emotional learning, or any other iteration of social justice in our schools is blatantly wrong. Please read the connections below and check out the websites of all those that are involved in CRT/SEL/Equity Framework/etc. I hope you find it as informative as I did.


The following document was produced with a collaborative effort by members of Kootenai County Republican Women Federated. Its purpose is to show the vast influence CASEL and Transformative SEL have in our schools, community, and Idaho government.

We believe a visual display of a flow-chart clearly shows the broad and deep links created throughout Idaho and the country. Linked reference material gives our research undeniable credibility. Our research clearly shows the increasing threat of racial, social, economic, and moral divisions in our communities and society.

In the moment, with ongoing racial injustice, and blatant white supremacy on display, we’re digging in our heels even more to work for justice and support our democracy.

~ Jayala Lilies Dunn, Director of Learning for Justice A Message From Our Director | Learning for Justice

The following definitions and descriptions are to help understand the flow-chart and show the vast reach of CASEL.

CASEL (Collaborative Academic Social Emotional Learning) Was created in 1994 with the goal of transforming education to create equity through an approach that concentrates on ethic, cultural, economic, and racial identities to improve educational learning. No research supported successes or failures of this approach and to date no data seems to be available to create credibility.

SEL (Social Emotional Learning) was created by CASEL in the same year as the formation of CASEL in 1994. The intent was to implement the goals of CASEL throughout schools and communities.

Transformative SEL is the evolution of CASEL and its SEL programs. “This form of SEL is aimed at redistributing power, to promote social justice through increased engagement in school and civic life.” Transformational SEL was once thought of as radical CASEL, but now has become the updated SEL program. SEL has been replaced with Transformative SEL.

Equity Framework (as seen in the Coeur d’Alene School District 271) was written and based on the goals and principles of CASEL and aligns with Transformative SEL. References within the Equity Framework show this to be true. All decision-making including curriculum, books, staff, record keeping must align with the Equity Framework. (Annamma S.A, Conne, D.J. & Ferri, B.A.(2016). Dis/ability critical race studies (DisCrit): Theorizing at the intersections of race and dis/ability.)

Portrait of a Graduate (as seen in CDA Schools) is based on the Equity Framework and intended to reach beyond the classroom and into family and community as intended by CASEL and Transformative SEL.

SAEBRS (Social, Academic, and Emotional Behavior Risk Screener) provided by Illuminate Education. This is a self-test and/or evaluation by students to determine risk factors. Criticism is that it is a twenty-minute test that gives a glimpse in time, before students meet their teacher and could cause a bias toward a student. It is put in a database that could be seen by those other than staff and parents. Also, teachers are expected to address the issues of students with no professional training or counseling background.

PECB: (Public Education & Business Coalition) This is a program located in Denver, Colorado for training teachers, staff and entire school districts. CDA Schools paid for 289 staff members to attend Denver Workshops and has presently hired a trainer to conduct training in the district for SEL. Their publication under How says, “To this end, we:…continually build our awareness about power, privilege, and oppression through researching, listening and questioning - embed DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) in our strategic planning process - disrupt white supremacy cultural norms individually, interpersonally, and institutionally- regularly assess and reflect on our progress toward becoming an anti-racist multi-cultural organization.”

UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) considers SEL the “Key to Building Global Citizens.” ACEI, UNESCO MGIEP delivered the online talk “Social and Emotional Learning: the Key to Building Global Citizenship”. From UNESCO website: UNESCO develops educational tools to help people live as global citizens free of hate and intolerance.

MGIEP (Mahatma Ghandi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development) Subsidiary of UNESCO. Vision: Transforming Education with Social and Emotional Learning for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). “At UNESCO MGIEP, we recognize the urgent need for Social Emotional Learning (SEL) to be mainstreamed into education systems to transform education and shape a future that is geared towards providing peace and human flourishing. SEL can be described as learning that allows all learners to identify and navigate emotions, practice mindful engagement and exhibit prosocial behaviour for human flourishing towards a peaceful and sustainable planet.”

ACEI (Association for Childhood International) is an organization committed to standardization of early childhood education. As part of an online learning event with ACEI, UNESCO MGIEP delivered the online talk about 'Social and Emotional Learning: the Key to Building Global Citizenship'. The website lists that they are excited to share the enthusiasm that SEL generated from participating educators.

Second Step is a school program used in some Idaho schools and is aligned with CASEL, SEL, and Transformative SEL. It’s advertised goals include bully prevention, conflict resolution, listening abilities and personal safety. It provides lessons and links to subjects such as social justice, white supremacy, and racial injustice.

Committee for Children is an international globalist organization that produced Second Step.

Collaborative on Spirituality in Education (CSE) This organization was established by Steven C. Rockefeller to promote spiritual and moral development of young people in and throughout schools. They launched Awakening Schools Institute in October 2021. Tim Shriver, founder of CASEL has been a keynote speaker at CSE conferences and tied spiritual development to SEL.

CASEL and Transformative SEL are advocating for churches and faith organizations incorporate SEL in their teachings and promoting that it has biblical roots.

Other Resources Links

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