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A new poll gets Connecticut residents’ thoughts on critical race theory

Image by Javier Robles

Most Connecticut residents say they’re at least somewhat familiar with critical race theory, but they’re split on whether it’s taught in schools, according to a new poll from a group affiliated with a Democrat-aligned PAC.

Critical race theory is an academic model based on the concept that racism is inherent in American society. It’s a complicated and higher-level academic field, not generally taught directly in K-12 settings.

Supporters say teaching it is a way to understand how racism affects life in America.

“CRT recognizes that racism is not a bygone relic of the past,” said a statement posted by the American Bar Association. “Instead, it acknowledges that the legacy of slavery, segregation and the imposition of second-class citizenship on Black Americans and other people of color continue to permeate the social fabric of this nation.”

Opponents say its concepts make their way into schools through other means, and can be used to design K-12 lesson plans. Some opponents say it can lead to new forms of intolerance.

According to the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, critical race theory “makes race the prism through which its proponents analyze all aspects of American life, categorizing individuals into groups of oppressors and victims.”

About 85% of Connecticut residents say they are at least somewhat familiar with the theory. About 40% of Connecticut residents say critical race theory is not taught in schools, compared to about 28% who say it is.

The poll comes as five opponents of critical race theory run for school board seats in Guilford, Connecticut, next week.

The poll was conducted by Public Policy Polling for Education Reform Now Advocacy, a group affiliated with a Democratic education PAC.

Copyright 2021 WSHU. To see more, visit WSHU.

Davis Dunavin loves telling stories, whether on the radio or around the campfire. He fell in love with sound-rich radio storytelling while working as an assistant reporter at KBIA public radio in Columbia, Missouri. Before coming back to radio, he worked in digital journalism as the editor of Newtown Patch. As a freelance reporter, his work for WSHU aired nationally on NPR. Davis is a proud graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism; he started in Missouri and ended up in Connecticut, which, he'd like to point out, is the same geographic trajectory taken by Mark Twain.

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