It’s a phrase repeated often at Providence: “There is no neutrality in education.” Whether explicitly or implicitly, every educational system promotes a distinctive worldview in every area of life, including our doctrine of God, sin, virtue, morality, family, and vocation. Education is as much formation as information, and children learn through habits, attitudes, speech, and assumptions embedded in every school classroom and program.
In the past few weeks, several prospective parents visiting our school have expressed extreme concern about the latest issue being taught in their public schools. Many local districts have adopted what they are calling “Black Lives Matter at School.” While Providence students are not impacted by these teachings at school, this kind of public instruction is largely shaping the society in which we all live. The program’s goals include the following:
- “We are committed to fostering a queer‐affirming network. When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking or, rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual unless s/he or they disclose otherwise.”
- “We are committed to disrupting the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and “villages” that collectively care for one another, and especially “our” children to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.”
- “We are committed to embracing and making space for trans siblings to participate and lead. We are committed to being self-reflexive and doing the work required to dismantle cis-gender privilege and uplift Black trans folk, especially Black trans women who continue to be disproportionately impacted by trans-antagonistic violence.”
The program 13 Guiding Principles – BLM AT SCHOOL is actively and unapologetically promoted by superintendents from our local districts. This may be eye-opening and surprising to some, while others may view it as simply a continuation of a troublesome but repackaged agenda.
To be clear: The sin of racism and the dark history of slavery must be openly acknowledged (see the June Providence Principles for more). The BLM at School program, however, goes far beyond this. The agenda is pernicious in much of what it promotes, seeking to tear down the biblical family structure, affirm behavior Scripture deems sinful, devalue fatherhood, oppose our God-given sexuality, discourage racial harmony, and plant in fertile minds the notion that truth is relative, individualized, and determined by ideologies such as Critical Race Theory. (See BREAKPOINT for a succinct Christian overview of the problems with CRT.)
As Christians called to raise up our children in the fear and nurture of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4 – note the specific call to fathers), we must take stock of the “progressive” ideologies permeating the public school system. Messages like BLM at School should serve as an impetus for Christians to take stock of the assault on the minds and hearts of our children, as such agendas leave no possibility for parents to continue to turn a blind eye to a system aimed at destroying Christian truth. Our children deserve an education full of grace and truth, the Good News of the gospel, and the redemptive work of Jesus Christ. While admittedly not a neutral message, our children deserve nothing less.