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Schools diversity program splits community

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    FORSYTH County, Georgia (WGCL) — Parents, students, and community members packed a Forsyth County Schools board meeting to express concerns and admiration over the district’s decision to adopt a diversity plan.

“Your strategic plan called DEI, diversity, equity, and inclusion will fail for one very very specific reason, god is not in it,” said a retired nurse and small business owner in Forsyth County.

“Thank you (for the program), I actually have a client who coaches huge organizations on how to include DEI and the importance of it and how it builds teams and cultures,” said Renee, a mother of two.

The program states that Forsyth County Schools will create a culture of belonging where differences, abilities and beliefs are respected and celebrated.

The program started in 2017.

It seems social media stirred up parents who believe the program is closely linked to the Critical Race Theory teachings and will lead to Marxism.

“We’ve seen things in the paper like transgender home coming queens and DEI and things like this,” said Bobby Donelly, Chairman of the Forsyth County Tea Party. “Everybody on this board is Republican if I’m not mistaken, and it seems like our values, our Republican values, are not matching what we’re seeing in our own schools.”

Others said it is needed to move away from the county’s troubled past.

“When I see time after time that fact that we try to escape the shadow of 1987 the plan you have proposed may not be a perfect plan but I would urge you to continue to listen,” said Daniel, a father of three.

In a letter to the community the county’s super intendent Dr. Jeff Bearden wrote in part:

Don’t we all desire to have a sense of belonging, to be respected and accepted for who we are and to have connections with others. As a parent, that is what I want for my own children. As an educator, that is what I want for all FCS children. This is ALL we are trying to accomplish at FCS with the DEI Plan and our mentoring program. There is no indoctrination. There is no political agenda. We simply want all our children and families to be valued. That’s it.

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