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Why Schools Are The Next Frontier In America’s Culture Wars

School buses are parked at a bus depot in the Red Hook neighborhood of Brooklyn in New York City. Mayor Bill de Blasio closed all New York City public schools for in-person learning after NYC hit a 3 percent coronavirus positivity rate on a seven-day rolling average.
School buses are parked at a bus depot in the Red Hook neighborhood of Brooklyn in New York City. Mayor Bill de Blasio closed all New York City public schools for in-person learning after NYC hit a 3 percent coronavirus positivity rate on a seven-day rolling average.

There are always multiple factors in any election victory, but it’s clear that one issue, in particular, played a big role in Glenn Youngkin’s win in Virginia’s gubernatorial race: education.

According to one poll by The Washington Post, education was a top issue for Virginia voters, especially as it related to the errant conservative struggle against critical race theory.

But Virginia isn’t the only place where what’s happening in schools can’t be separated from what’s happening in politics.

What does it mean now that wider political disputes are playing out in schools? And what can we learn from history about the power of schools as sites for political change? 

Copyright 2021 WAMU 88.5


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