You can access the comprehensive curriculum used during an English 10 class at this link.
In January of 2023, a teacher introduced this new curriculum to their English classroom. However, despite its implementation, as of June 6th, 2023, neither the Curriculum Director, nor Superintendent have addressed any concerns related to this matter. On June 3rd, I received a letter from the Curriculum Evaluation Committee stating that the above curriculum meet their standards and can be used in classrooms.
On Wednesday, July 19th, the appeal regarding the white supremacy triangle materials took place at the Mankato Governmental Center.
During the appeal, there was an opportunity for the school board to maintain the previous committee’s approval while incorporating an addendum that would include additional slides or materials presenting different perspectives. Unfortunately, they chose not to do so and, on a 6-1 vote, agreed to proceed with teaching the white supremacy triangle without providing additional perspectives. Chris Kind was the lone board member who objected to teaching these materials without supplementary viewpoints. On the other hand, Chair Shannon Sinning and board members Kari Pratt, Erin Roberts, Kristi Schuck, Patrick Baker, and Liz Ratcliff supported the decision to continue teaching this material.
It’s worth mentioning that these materials were utilized in one class, and it is important to note that the majority of teachers would not choose to employ such instructional materials.
Here is the transcript of my appeals speech delivered to the Mankato Area School Board. The speech addresses concerns regarding the district’s adherence to policy 630 and the curriculum appeal pertaining to the White Supremacy Triangle. You will also find attached FAIR legal departments letter to Principal Sheri Blasing and Superintendent Peterson’s response.
*From my understanding this curriculum was approved to be taught at Mankato West High School, but only one teacher was using the curriculum.
It’s important to acknowledge that the majority of teachers are diligent and dedicated professionals, and it’s unfair to generalize and discriminate against an entire profession based on the actions or beliefs of a single individual within that profession. Discrimination should never be tolerated, and it’s important to approach these issues with empathy, love, and understanding. We must strive towards a society that values inclusivity and respect for all.
Elizabeth Hanke warns that promoting discrimination as education and not allowing compassion towards those being discriminated against is a dangerous path to follow.
The Mankato Area Public School Board’s Policy 630, titled “Reconsideration of Textbooks or Other Instructional Materials,” along with its accompanying guidelines, detail the procedure for filing a formal challenge.
Upon conducting a reverse image search of the curriculum, I found that the Covert and Overt White Supremacy triangle was sourced from this webpage: https://www.wearebeloved.org/blog/2020/5/29/white-supremacy-amp-anti-blackness-a-covert-amp-overt-beast
Below is the Concern Statement I submitted to the Superintendent and Curriculum Director of Mankato Area Public School and the Curriculum Evaluation Committee. Please note that I have redacted actual names in posted version in order to protect privacy online.
Continuation of what was submitted to the Curriculum Evaluation Committee
Resources are marked on the prior sheet.
- What Brought this title to your attention?
● Not so much the title the content
- Please comment on the resources as a whole as well as being
specific about those matters which concern you?
● According to District Policy 604,, “The instructional approach will
● Name Redacted agreed that “Make America Great Again,” was
discrimination against conservatives that support former
president trump and would ensure that it is removed.
● When I presented this curriculum to the community, several
individuals alleged that different aspects of the curriculum
were discriminatory. This raises the question of how the
curriculum adheres to Policy 604’s expectations and how the
community can discuss and dispute the argument that the
covert white supremacy triangle is not discriminatory.
● Paternalism, which is the practice of treating people as
subordinate subjects for their own good, is problematic and
goes against the philosophy of valuing freedom. Apply this
idea to situations where schools or the government may be
intervening in the lives of people of color (POC) “for their own
good. When schools or the government act in a paternalistic
way towards POC, they are not respecting their freedom and
agency. Instead, they are treating them as if they cannot
make decisions for themselves and need someone else to tell
them what to do.
○ paternalistic interventions can be racist, as they may be
based on assumptions about what is best for POC without
taking into account their individual needs and experiences.
This can further perpetuate systemic barriers and
● Meritocracy – Meritocracy is not inherently racist, as it is
based on the idea of rewarding individuals based on their
abilities and achievements, rather than their social status,
race, or other personal characteristics.
● Calling the Police: I mentioned to Name Redacted, an incident
that occurred in the summer 2021 on the 100 block of Liberty
Street. A woman was seen beating a man with an iron rod,
but I refrained from calling the police due to the political
rhetoric and climate in our community. Name Redacted ended up
calling the police while bystanders watched. I shared this with
Name Redacted, to emphasize that the message about policing. This message could be dangerous for our community. Then Name Redacted suggested that discussions about these issues could take
place in class, making the curriculum relevant. I expressed
my interest in leading such a discussion with the English 10
class. However, my request was denied. This conversation
happened over the phone.
● District policy 626, mandates a balanced presentation where all
aspects of an issue are discussed, and the school district’s stance
remains impartial. In what ways does a teacher’s claim that “all
Lives Matter” constitutes covert white supremacy align with a
neutral approach? As an alternative viewpoint, I contend that
valuing the lives of all students is of utmost importance.
● According to district policy 626, The topic must be one in which
the teacher is knowledgeable. How is an English teacher
qualified to make a scientific argument? “There is only one
human race.” When scientists claim, ” data shows that the DNA
of any two human beings is 99.9 percent identical and we are one
- What Action, If Any, do you wish to result from this process?
● This curriculum should be removed from classrooms
● The teacher that introduced the curriculum should face a
consequence for discriminating against her students.
● The parents from this West English 10 class should be made aware that this
curriculum was taught.
● There should be more transparency through West High School on
what is being taught in the classroom.
- What Curriculum should be taught instead:
● Simply removing discriminatory curriculum from ENGLISH class
should be enough. But if you want better curriculum to discuss
discrimination and hardship:
These are my conversations with the Director of Teaching and Learning
I sent my statement of concern to school board members as well
The Following is an email conversation with a school board member
For context this school board member is referring to a policy meeting with two school board members and Staff. I was told I do not “help the right type of people and my exchange students do not count.” My concern was with a policy change where students and staff of color would be put in buildings with other Students and staff of color for collegial support.
On June 3rd, in the mail, I was notified that the curriculum was authorized to be used in classrooms. However, none of my concerns received a written response, no one asked about the photos or videos I had for this lesson, and to my knowledge no student receiving this lesson was asked to the meeting. None of the committee members work at Mankato West, as the staff were all from other schools.
And here is a poem by Chat GPT and Beth Hanke
We may be different in color and race, But at heart, we’re all the same human race. We’re all made of bones, flesh, and blood, And we all need love, just like a rose needs mud.
Some may say one life is worth more than another, But that thought just leads us to fight one another. It’s time to see that we’re all equal in worth, And that every single life has its own unique birth.
We all have a purpose, a dream to fulfill, And when we work together, we can climb any hill. We must cherish each other, like a flower so rare, And show compassion to those in need, everywhere.
So let’s stand together, and show our love and care, For each person on this planet, everywhere. No matter the language, no matter the race, All lives matter, let’s all embrace.