New Hanover County Republican School Board Member Questions District’s Social Studies Curriculum

Source: Port City Daily

Recently, New Hanover County Republican school board member Pete Wildeboer questioned the county’s social studies curriculum, specifically regarding how the 1898 Wilmington Massacre is taught. Wildeboer expressed concern and asked Chief Academic Officer Patrice Faison if the 1898 Wilmington Massacre was being taught “factually,” according to Port City Daily.

Wildeboer’s questioning of the curriculum is part of a growing movement of conservatives that have been targeting education on racial concepts, oftentimes making false claims that schools and teachers are trying to “indoctrinate” children. Wildeboer is one of two Republicans on the NHC school board and is running for reelection this year. 

“I’m going to continue to be concerned about our social studies curriculum overall with glossary terms such as ‘oppressed,’ ‘oppressor,’ ‘marginalized people,’” Wildeboer said during the meeting. 

Wildeboer also told Port City Daily that he had heard concerns from parents that the curriculum was being changed or repackaged, although he did not provide any specific instances of change in the curricula. Board members Judy Justice and Nelson Beaulieu said that they have not witnessed any discrepancies in the curriculum. 

Justice also told PCD that the terms Wildeboer is so concerned about, such as “oppressed” or “marginalized people” are facts. “People were oppressed. What do you think slavery was?” she asked. 

To not address them, she told PCD, would be ignoring a major problem around equity, diversity and inclusion — also a hot topic among school board members over the last year.

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