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Adecade ago, when an Obama-era initiative called “Common Core” convinced 41 states to give up control of their education standards, it was infamously the result of a massive influence campaign by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Now, with America’s K-12 landscape being turned upside down by “equity” initiatives that divide children by ethnicity and devalue rigorous academics, the culprit is much the same: Gates and other philanthropic foundations.
That’s a takeaway from the two years I spent poring through educational and financial records for my new book, “Race to the Bottom: Uncovering the Secret Forces Destroying American Public Education.” These philanthropic foundations are perhaps the most powerful and least understood force in American politics — and a key node in moving critical race theory from academic papers to society. Pick any radical racial initiative in your child’s school, and it is likely to tie back to the Ford, Kellogg, Gates, Annie E. Casey, MacArthur, or Surdna foundations.
Take the 1619 Project, Nikole Hannah-Jones’s 2019 New York Times series-turned-grade school curriculum. It might never have seen the light of day if not for the MacArthur Foundation...
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