State appeals court hears challenge to Albemarle schools’ anti-racism policy

Published: Sep. 12, 2023 at 5:11 PM EDT

RICHMOND, Va. (WVIR) - The Virginia Court of Appeals heard a challenge on Tuesday to an anti-racism policy in Albemarle County Schools filed by parents being represented by an Arizona-based conservative legal advocacy group.

A lower court previously dismissed the plaintiffs’ case which argues the district violated the civil rights of white students by making them feel guilty about historical events.

“This case really is about ensuring that every student is treated equally under the law, regardless of their race, religion, ethnicity,” said Kate Anderson with the Alliance Defending Freedom. She claimed the policy made students, “affirm this idea that race is really the only thing that matters, and that what they can achieve is based on the color of their skin.”

The policy was fully implemented by the district by the 2020-21 academic year. The school board rejected complaints by parents who objected to the policy.

“We had one student who was taught through a video that because she’s Latina [and] her parents are immigrants, that she shouldn’t be able to live in a big house or go to a good school, or have a good job because those things are reserved for white kids,” said Anderson.

NBC29 reached out to the school district for its response to the appeal. It sent the following response in writing:

Anderson said the plaintiffs expect to wait months before a final decision is reached by the court.

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