A Minnesota student has claimed she and her classmates were told to keep the content of a so-called “equity survey” — including questions about gender identity — from their parents during this past school year.
Haylee Yasgar, a student at Riverview Intermediate School in the St. Cloud suburb of Sartell, told the local school board during a July 19 meeting that she was “very confused” by the survey.
“My teacher said that I could not skip any questions even when I didn’t understand them. One question asked us what gender we identify with,” Haylee told the board, according to video posted online by independent Minnesota outlet Alpha News.
“A boy in my class asked the teacher if his mom could explain the question to him, because even after the teacher explained it, he still didn’t understand it,” the child continued. “My teacher told him that he was not allowed to ask his mom, and that we could not repeat any of the questions to our parents.”
Haylee told the board the experience made her “uncomfortable and nervous.”
“My mom always tells me I can tell her anything, but she also tells me I can trust my teachers, too,” she said. “Being asked to hide this from my mom made me feel very uncomfortable, like I was doing something wrong.”
Alpha News reported that the survey was part of an $80,000 audit by Equity Alliance MN, a non-profit group which claims it “works with students, educators, and districts to achieve our vision of educational equity for all students.”
Equity Alliance MN touts its equity audits on its website, describing them as providing “insight into current practices, [educating] on systemic and programmatic inequities, and a foundation to implement the necessary processes and steps to plan for change.”
Haylee’s mother, Kelsey Yasgar, told Fox News Monday that parents knew that the audit would happen, but did not know the precise date it would take place.
“Due to the lack of transparency from the school district and from Equity Alliance MN … we were not informed of the questions on the survey,” she told “Fox & Friends.” “When my daughter came forth and told me that her teacher had said, ‘You cannot skip any questions, even if you don’t understand them,’ and when children were asking questions and asking if they could ask their parents about it, I was very upset when I found out that she was told not to repeat any of the questions to me or any other adult in her life.”
Kelsey Yasgar went on to claim that the order to keep the kids from talking about the survey “came down from administration and Equity Alliance MN instructed them to make sure the children did not share this information with their parents, and that should pose a great concern in any parent’s eyes.”
The Minnesota controversy is the latest flashpoint over the teaching of critical race theory — which teaches that racism is at the root of America’s history, laws and institutions — and affiliated concepts in K-12 schools. The issue has pitted concerned parents against school boards and leaders of teachers’ unions.
“Children do not see color, they are taught to see color,” Kelsey Yasgar said Monday. “And when you bring things like Equity Alliance MN into our school district, equity is the mask that critical race theory hides behind, and we are not OK with those type of ideologies being taught to our children at school.
“Politics do not belong in our schools,” Yasgar added. “They’re there to be educated.”
Neither the Sartell-St. Stephen School District or Equity Alliance MN responded to requests for comment by The Post.