Dr. Mark Bedell is Kansas City’s new superintendent of schools
Excerpted From WND: One of the nation’s largest school districts has adopted a resolution banning “hate speech” against Muslim students while accusing America of having “a long history of racism and xenophobia.”
The controversial resolution, unanimously approved by the Kansas City Board of Education on Sept. 28, states that there are 30,000 Muslims living in the greater Kansas City area, “making invaluable contributions to our economy, our social and political life, and our culture.”
It goes on to state that discrimination on the basis of religion, “and against Muslims in particular, is deeply embedded within our country’s long history of racism and xenophobia.”
The Sept. 28 meeting was reportedly packed with local Muslims seeking to show their support for the resolution. Shaheen Ahmed of the Crescent Peace Society, a Kansas City interfaith organization, requested the board to adopt the resolution and the Muslims were hoping that other school districts would follow the lead of Kansas City and adopt similar resolutions, according to a tweet by Mahnaz Shabbir, an adviser to the Crescent Peace Society who also attended the meeting.
More from the “anti-hate” resolution is quoted below:
“WHEREAS there has been an unprecedented backlash since the September 11 the attacks in the form of hate crimes and employment discrimination toward Arab and Muslim Americans and those perceived as Muslims; and
“WHEREAS Muslims, Muslim Americans, and those perceived as Muslims, are frequently the targets of abusive and discriminatory police practices sanctioned by the state including surveillance in their neighborhoods and places of worship.”
The document further resolves that Kansas City schools “condemns all hateful speech and violent action directed at Muslims, those perceived as Muslims, immigrants and people of color.”
The school board, according to the resolution, “commits to fostering a school environment that promotes respect for and curiosity about all religions and cultures, affirms the equal humanity of all members of the community, and rejects all forms of bullying and discrimination.”
Sensitivity training for teachers
The board promises to provide sensitivity training for teachers and staff to make sure they have right attitudes toward Muslims, and it also commits to using a “curriculum that reflects the values expressed in this resolution” while providing “safe spaces” for Muslim students to address bullying.
The resolution promises to “commit to instituting school policies and setting an educational curriculum that reflects the values expressed in this resolution via training of staff and teachers, the inclusion of diverse resources to supplement in-class curricula, and the creation of safe spaces for students to address in-school bullying.”
The resolution was passed with an 8-0 vote and one board member absent. It is signed at the bottom by Superintendent Mark Bedell and Board Chair Melissa Robinson.
WND contacted Bedell’s office by phone Tuesday and was told by his public relations director that he was out of the office and unable to comment on whether the school district had experienced any acts of bullying against Muslim students recently.
Bedell assumed the top post at Kansas City Public Schools on July 1, having previously served as the assistant superintendent for Baltimore County Public Schools. Keep reading