Member of the school board in Virginia, who caused a stir last year when she asked to ban a Toni Morrison classic, was launched from a new working group on educational models and “lab schools” after deeming it “unsustainable” to educate English language learners in Virginia Beach.
Victoria Manning, a large member of the Virginia Beach school board, wrote on Facebook last week that the district added 300 ESL students over the past year. “Most are from South America,” she wrote. “Our ESL budget has grown by more than $1 million in two years. Continuing to educate South Americans is unsustainable.”
The vile comment was made a few hours after Manning had announcement in school board meeting Last week, Republican Governor of Virginia Glenn Youngkin and Education Secretary Aimee Guidera selected her to join a new working group on innovative educational models and lab schools that will explore schools. Colleges and universities partner with K-12 schools.
“It’s been a really exciting group to come up with ideas for what we can do in innovation as a partnership with these universities,” she said at the time.
On Monday, Guidera told The Daily Beast through a spokesperson that Manning would no longer be part of the group.
Guidera said: “We completely condemn Ms Manning’s comments. “They are completely unacceptable and in stark contrast to the Youngkin administration’s commitment to educating and preparing every child in the Commonwealth for success in life. Victoria Manning will no longer be part of our working group.”
The spokesman, Macaulay Porter, said the working group was “informal” and Youngkin found Manning’s remarks “unacceptable.”
Youngkin proposed to allocate $150 million to support the lab school program, according to WAVY. He also specifically captured the teaching of the nation’s rife with race and racism during his campaign last year and introduced a ban on critical racial theory and ” divisive concepts” from the classroom. first operating command of its own government.
The Democratic-controlled state senate pushed back his efforts to resolve the issue but Youngkin continued to move forward, release a report last week to identify “concepts of discrimination” and “inherent divisions” in public education including “Main Racial Theory and Its Progeny”.
In an interview with The Daily Beast on Monday, Beatriz Amberman, president of the Virginia Alliance of Latino Organizations, called the comments “divisive” and suggested that Manning was “bullying” the children of the ranks. parents pay taxes.
“Just because someone speaks another language doesn’t mean they don’t belong in this country,” says Amberman. “Our kids who are taking ESL classes will become bilingual citizens of this country. They will use those skills to serve our country. “
In a statement to The Daily Beast on Monday, Manning asserted that her comments were distorted by political enemies and pointed to staffing shortages that she says are leaving teachers “overburdened.” .
“I made a post on social media and my political opponents twisted my words into something I had absolutely no intention of. I love everyone, no matter where they come from,” she said. “The media and left-wing narrative and demise of the culture that paints everyone with whom they disagree as a racist needs to stop.”
“I believe it is our mission to provide an appropriate education for ALL students who reside in our city and I fully support the ESL program and our amazing ESL teachers. . Without teachers and without proper teachers and funding, the current path is unsustainable,” she added.
When asked if she believes Manning should apologize for those remarks, Amberman said the damage has already been done.
“Our concern – it’s not an apology from someone who clearly doesn’t have a clear thought on how to serve the public. We already knew what she was thinking by the statement she made,” said Amberman. “It’s basically a knife thrown at children.”
Manning’s remarks quickly drew criticism from school board leaders.
“We personally do not sympathize with nor support our colleagues’ comments about our ESL program,” Virginia Beach School Board President Carolyn Rye and Vice President Kim Melnyk said in a joint statement. “Individual members of the Board of Directors do not have the right to act and speak on behalf of the Board of Directors. Our community should rest assured that we will continue to educate and surround every child that walks through our door. ”
On Monday, Manning accused school board leaders of assaulting her because she opposed their agenda on a number of issues, including disciplinary issues, unprepared graduates. thoroughness and library books she believes are biased or “pornographic”—all of which she details a personal website that once introduced a “wake-checker” for monitoring CRT at Virginia Beach schools.
According to the district, 2,084 students are eligible for ESL services, an increase of about 300 students since last fall. Dr. Nicole DeVries said the most common first language spoken among ESL students was Spanish, followed by Tagalog, Mandarin and Vietnamese.
DeVries shared this number — which represents about 3% of the district’s total enrollment — during the district’s ESL program briefing at last week’s meeting. In response, Manning asked if the students were “primarily from South America.”
“Many different countries, but I can tell you we have a large population that comes from our Central American countries,” DeVries replied.
The district employs 43 ESL teachers and Superintendent Aaron Spence has requested increased funding for eight additional full-time positions for the upcoming school year.
Natalie Allen, a spokeswoman for the district, told The Daily Beast in an email Monday that although the district’s ESL population has grown in recent years, “it is remarkable that we have not seen an increase in ESL population growth.” large increase of students from South America.”
“We serve and welcome families from all over the world, including NATO families and refugees, among others,” she wrote, adding that the district had no problems. budget for your ESL program.
Manning’s comments on Facebook are not the first time she has caused outrage.
In October, she’s against Toni Morrison’s Blue eyes after researching carefully about books with “erotic” content. She then demanded that five other books be removed from the school library shelves for the same reasons after “skimming” them and demanded that the teachers be punished.
The debacle over Manning’s divisive comments about ESL programs comes nearly a year after she accused others of segregation of children based on race in appear on “Fox and Friends”.
“Our students and teachers are being taught that our country is innately racist, and students and teachers are pitted against each other based on the color of their skin,” she said at the time. there.