YEAR-IN-REVIEW: In Downingtown, parents decry Critical Race Theory with public petition – Daily Local News – DC Initiative on Racial Equity
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DOWNINGTOWN — July was hot. Yet the weather brought lighter heat waves than an average school board meeting in America this past summer.

In Downingtown, people spoke out against the controversial Critical Race Theory, and the hiring of a new Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion director. A petition was even been circulated.

At a July school board meeting, incoming freshman Mackenzie Gillespie of Upper Uwchlan Township said Critical Race Theory has been doing more harm than good by increasing “the space between people in today’s society.”

Gillespie is a freshman at a regional private school, Villa Maria. She was able to speak at the July meeting because she lives within the Downingtown  Area School District as a resident of Upper Uwchlan.

The teen said while in seventh grade at a local area school during an ‘Affinity’ group project, she and her peers were required to classify themselves in one of more than 35 categorical identification options of race, ethnicity and gender.

“All that did was separate us and category us by our differences,” Gillespie told the elected officials of the Downingtown Area School District.

“Before Critical Race Theory was brought up in the classroom, not one kid I knew thought about race or gender,” Gillespie said.

“Kids should be taught to view each other as a whole community, not see the divide between us based on our physical appearances,” she said.

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