A parental rights advocate blew the whistle on the Rhode Island Department of Education’s teacher training involving an “intersectionality wheel” that encouraged teachers to be an “LGBTQ ally.”
Nicole Solas, a Rhode Island parent and parents’ right advocate, shared images and screenshots from RIDE’s social emotional learning (SEL) training on social media.
Solas obtained a link to the training through a public records request.
The “intersectionality wheel” was adapted from Sylvia Duckworth’s Wheel of Power Privilege. The wheel categorizes such characterisitics as body size, wealth and citizenship on a scale of “marginalized” to “powerful.”
For example, heterosexuals are placed at the center, “power” area of the wheel, while LGBT people are at the edge, or “marginalized,” area.
“We also encourage you to think about what placements you are, and look at policies that may affect and also support the ways that we engage this community around pronouns and names, especially if you are in school settings,” one of the presenters, Aswood Bousseau, said.
“We do have policies that protect individuals from this community in school settings, especially students, and protect their confidentiality.”
Bousseau then asked the educators how many identities they had in the marginalized circle.
“When we’re working with students, you can have a student from the same household, and they may not share the same intersectionalities, which then, again, we go back to the idea of social currency, which is, how much power do we have in society?” Bosseau said.
Some teachers shared that most of their identities were in the power section. One even said she felt “sad” that there was a boy who wasn’t able to use the girls’ bathroom.
Another teacher from West Warwick Public School said his school is developing a tool book that instructs teachers to apologize for using the wrong pronouns.
“If you misuse a pronoun you will apologize once, then move on,” the tool book reportedlysays.
Teachers were also told to consider alternative “gender neutral” titles to prom and homecoming “kings” and “queens,” as well as holidays such as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day in a way which affirms “all family structures.”
Solas warns that such ideology, often under the guise of “Social, Emotional Learning,” or SEL, is indoctination.
“SEL is not about teaching emotional regulation,” Solas said. “It is about manipulating emotions to enforce a political orthodoxy and ‘shift[ing] culture.’”