Spend enough time studying the “racial equity” and “ethnic studies” programs sweeping school districts across the nation and you’ll find that they are following in the footsteps, on a several-year delay, of one of America’s most progressive cities: Seattle.
It’s worth examining, then, how all that worked out in Seattle. Despite decades of the most aggressive equity programs anyone could ask for, Seattle’s racial disparities are among the worst in the nation – and they’re getting worse, not better.
At the forefront of Seattle Public Schools’ (SPS) initiatives was Tracy Castro-Gill, until recently its director of ethnic studies, who represented herself as a fierce Chicana who overcame homelessness and was willing to take on racism no matter who she had to battle, turning schools into vehicles for social change.
Castro-Gill, it turned out, was a perennially unhappy toxic liar, one who misrepresented her background to the point that her own father compared her to Rachel Dolezal, and who was ultimately pushed out of her job for repeated misconduct. A focus on racial oppression did not create resiliency, but rather despondency, with Castro-Gill and three other racial justice leaders going on paid leave from SPS for mental health issues in 2019 alone. more