Friday, September 29, 2023

We the Parents of Coronado: What Do They Value?

“Our foundational premise is that parents have primary responsibility for the education of their children,” wrote the We the Parents contact in an email.

We the Parents of Coronado, a grassroots organization noted for its opposition to Critical Race Theory, says it supports a narrow mission that all parents can get behind: student achievement in Coronado schools. But some say the organization may support other values that Coronado residents might find disturbing.

Prior to going offline Wednesday afternoon, the We the Parents of Coronado Website featured a section called “Values” that linked to a post about the Declaration of Independence on the American Citadel blog written by Zack Strong. But when visitors clicked through to The American Citadel site and viewed other blog posts there, some were shocked to discover that other posts contained controversial content. (The We the Parents website archive can be viewed here although the link has since been removed and the site has been on and offline intermittently the past few days.)

The We the Parents of Coronado website linked to a blog called The American Citadel under the “Values” heading in “Principles espoused in the Declaration of Independence.”

Posts found on The American Citadel site include anti-LGBTQ referring to the homosexual ‘agenda’ as “satanic” and “dangerous,” while others are blatantly misogynistic, including one post called “Stay Home, Amy” that chastises newly-appointed Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett for working outside of the home, and ends with the advice, “Ladies, the home is where you were designed to shine.” Many posts are suggestive of anti-Semitism, while others appear to make disparaging comments about Black Americans, Native Americans and Asian Americans. Other posts seem to call for a violent insurrection, and fantasize about the assassination of President Biden and Vice President Harris.

The Coronado Times reached out to the We the Parents Coronado organization via email for comment on the link to The American Citadel and a response from We the Parents was received, sent under an alias and a generic gmail account. The contact from We the Parents agreed that the material was offensive, said the link was removed, and sent the following message:

Thanks for heads up. We agree. It was our error to link to the site. Link deleted. WTPC Admin believes it was a case of trying to link a particular piece from that site we thought insightful. Keeping a website current and “clean” is a daunting project. And we sincerely appreciate community input to keep it so.”

The contact shared that, although We the Parents purposefully does not maintain an official list of members, most are parents of currently enrolled students. Others include current students themselves and recent graduates, as well as other concerned citizens including experienced educational professionals, many who are troubled by the No Place for Hate program that some say aligns with Critical Race Theory.

Screenshot from We the Parents of Coronado website prior to it going offline.

“Our organization began because it seemed that the voices of Coronado Parents were not being heard by the leadership concern at Coronado schools,” said the contact. “A group of parents began to form as more and more of our children began to be exposed to the No Place for Hate program during the instructional day, facilitated by school administrators.”

At the last CUSD school board meeting, Karl Mueller, CUSD Superintendent, said that although NPFH was a club, the district acknowledged that club activities may have bled into school hours during the COVID distance learning. He said in the future, NPFH will follow club guidelines just like all the other clubs, as outlined in district policy. But board member Stacy Keszei alleged that NPFH is dangerous and should not be allowed on campus in any capacity.

“Our foundational premise is that parents have primary responsibility for the education of their children,” wrote the We the Parents contact in an email. “Schools act as the agent of parents for the delivery of educational content in traditional school areas of literacy, mathematics, science, and history. The moral and character formation of children is the primary responsibility of parents not schools. Schools do have a parental warrant to shape and strictly regulate behavior of children to maintain an educational environment suitable for all students.”

We the Parents of Coronado has been vocal at school board meetings for its anti-CRT stance and the organization has also advocated for mask-choice. The organization also has been active in criticizing how some school board members and school administration handled the aftermath of the Tortilla-Gate fiasco. Elected officials from Coronado have spoken alongside the group at several events.

On August 19, CUSD board member Stacy Keszei spoke alongside a representative from We the Parents at the “Let Them Breathe” rally, pushing for mask choice. On July 7, Mayor Richard Bailey spoke in support of the CUSD basketball team, at a rally organized by We the Parents. The Coronado Times reached out to both Keszei and Mayor Bailey for comment on their involvement with We the Parents of Coronado, but did not receive a response at the time of publication.

Most recently, on Saturday, August 28, the executive director of We the Parents, Jim Fabiszak, spoke at a rally hosted by the California for Equal Rights Foundation, according to a press release from the organization’s website. The rally promoted the “importance of unifying against CRT’s various applications in San Diego schools and beyond.”

This story is developing.


Christine Van Tuyl
Christine Van Tuyl
Christine was born and raised in Texas, but moved to Coronado with her family as a teen in 1993. Although initially horrified by surfers, flannels and skateboards, she ultimately grew to love all things So-Cal. A graduate of UCSD, Christine got her first writing job on the KUSI ten o’clock news while simultaneously juggling a reporter position at the San Diego Community News Group. She worked as a public relations professional, a book editor, real estate professional, and a freelance writer before eventually succumbing to motherhood in 2008.A decade later, Christine resurfaced to start the Island Girl Blog, a Coronado lifestyle blog. In addition, she writes a monthly page for Crown City Magazine. Christine loves hanging out with her husband, Ian, and their two spirited daughters, Holland and Marley, who attend Village Elementary and Coronado Middle School. When she’s not working, you’ll find her practicing yoga, spilling coffee at school drop off, meeting friends for sushi, or sailing the Bay with her family and English Bulldog, Moshi. Have news to share? Send tips, story ideas or letters to the editor to: [email protected]