Sometime in the second week of March, the conservative school district board of Elizabeth, Colorado, faced a crisis. The crisis was one that Republicans and other conservatives have brought to every school board billionaire-funded protest they could get to: critical race theory and grooming in the classrooms!
There’s one problem, though. No, not the fact that there is nowhere in the history of anywhere that teaches CRT in grade school, but that the Elizabeth school board is made up of conservatives from the very conservative western Elbert County area of Colorado. Those conservatives are also against the windmill ghosts of CRT and other “woke” agenda boogiemen, but that doesn’t mean the rest of the hysteria around them has abated.
As a result, on Monday, March 13, three school board members—the president, his vice president, and the secretary, all three of whom are Republicans—resigned their positions from the school board. The resignations took effect on March 14. Did these three members resign because they believe their rural Colorado school district should be teaching a class on Marx, race, and capitalism? No. In fact, all three are on the record as being staunchly against the mythical beasts of the “woke agenda.”
They resigned because the conservative-led hysteria over race and education in schools seems to have consumed the community.
President Cary Karcher, Vice President Kim Frumveller, and Secretary Craig Blackham had all made their intentions to resign known the Friday before their resignations. Karcher wrote of his resignation that the two remaining board members, Rhonda Olsen and Heather Booth, seem to have effectively turned the school board into something that doesn’t do the work of a school board anymore.
“Board member personal agendas created an environment where the board spent more time discussing personnel issues and the presence or prevention of radical left-wing ideologies such as CRT (critical race theory), SEL (social emotional learning) and restorative justice, that do not exist in our district.”
The week before he tendered his resignation, Karcher spoke during a school board meeting about the bizarre anti-education nature of the anti-CRT and LGBTQ+ hysteria: “I am a conservative. I’m upset about [CRT] too. I don’t want it to come into the district, but I don’t want this conversation to happen week after week after week either.” Take that in. He’s basically saying he’s a racist too but that his school district has long ago sanitized its educational practices to line up with the homophobes and anti-trans conservative movement.
Frumveller was first elected to her position in 2019. She said that her enjoyment of being on the board has been replaced by something the conservative movement of the country is wallowing in full time these days. “Since the election of 2021, the dynamics of our board changed greatly, and not for the better. For my first two years, we never had a complaint that pertained to personality issues. Nothing. And now it seems that my days are consumed with constant issues and lies, the lies never seem to stop.”
The school board meetings over the past year or more have been consumed by a parade of people griping about how CRT and the “woke agenda” are infiltrating the Elizabeth County school district. It led to Running Creek Elementary School Principal Robin Hunt resigning in January (effective at the end of the school year in June), and slamming the politics being played out by certain conservative board members against other conservative members. Hunt, who identifies as Christian and conservative, spoke in front of the board when tendering her resignation. She did not mince words.
“Today, at least one board member has displayed a retaliatory mindset, having a hit list of those staff members this board member can’t control. They have manipulated others to do their dirty work in the community and have used condescending and derogatory language to defame and slander several leaders, not just me. Why would any other conservative want to work in this district knowing how they may be ostracized and made to be a villain? These board members have chosen to lead with fear and manipulation. This promotes control on their part. This battle that some of the board members have waged on the Elizabeth School District, Running Creek and myself is not a political battle but rather one of personal agendas, the need for control, and power.”
The two board members who did not resign, Rhonda Olsen and Heather Booth, have been doing their part to fan the flames of CRT hysteria. In February this brought out Elizabeth High School Principal Bret McClendon, who pleaded with them to “please stop chasing ghosts. We are not teaching critical race theory at Elizabeth High School. Nor are we indoctrinating kids about non-traditional lifestyles.”
The following week a parent, Shawn McWhorter, from the school system applied to have Booth recalled. He explained:
“There is a big difference between being conservative and radical. Director Booth’s actions prove that she is radical. Director Booth’s stance on the false narratives directly impact her ability to serve all students regardless of the political beliefs, ability, race, religion, or sexual orientation. Director Booth’s stance will single out students in our schools, negatively affecting their safety and well-being. I stand here tonight supporting for Director Blackham, Director Karcher, and Director Frumveller and the Elizabeth district leadership, teachers, and all the students. I ask everyone present and watching online to join in the recall of Director Heather Booth and put a stop to the radical behavior of school board member. Kids should always come first. Elizabeth School District students deserve better.”
Booth’s defense of her indefensible position echoed the MAGA charlatan Donald Trump: “Even if it’s not here (referencing CRT and SEL), as some say, we need to put safeguards in place to make sure it doesn’t come here. And that’s what we’re desperately trying to do.” Booth and Olsen have also been accused of breaking their oaths of confidentiality by disclosing “executive session meetings to the public.” While the District Attorney’s Office was contacted back in December 2022 regarding the matter Frumveller reportedly worked with the Elizabeth Police Department to deal with the matter, nothing more has come of that specific charge.
McWhorter has until April 24, 2023 to get 2,500 signatures in order to get the recall on the ballot.
You can watch one of the local news reports on this snake-eating-its-tail phenomenon.
Sign the petition: Push back against state attempts to ban Black history
Our planned Ukraine episode will have to wait, as Donald Trump is being arraigned in New York City for his role in falsifying records to hide hush money paid to Stormy Daniels. This is the first of a potential slew of indictments coming Trump’s way, and we are here for a celebration of karmic justice—and to talk about what happens to the Republican Party after this.