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Staff at One California School Signed a Letter Accusing Israel of ‘Apartheid’

AP Photo/Stefan Jeremiah

Last week, in a House hearing, the superintendent of Berkeley Public Schools in California pushed back against claims of disturbing instances of antisemitism in her school district, which Townhall reported

In the hearing, "Confronting Pervasive Antisemitism in K-12 Schools,” Superintendent Enikia Ford Morthel claimed that “any suggestion or assertion that antisemitism is pervasive in BPSD is false,” despite there being several documented instances of antisemitism in the schools, including instances where students have said remarks such as “kill the Jews.” 

Now, records have shown that staff in a different California school are pushing antisemitism.

According to documents obtained by PDE and shared with Townhall, several staff from the San Diego public charter school High Tech High signed an open letter called “Educators for Palestinian Freedom.” 

The open letter was for teachers who see themselves as “progressive educators who oppose racism and settler colonialism in all its forms” and accuses Israel of “apartheid” (via Educators for Palestine):

While the mainstream media continues to present the loss of Palestinian life, land, and infrastructure suffered over the last week as a conflict between two sides—we maintain that this is not a "conflict." There is no symmetry of power or military. This is apartheid and persecution.

[...]

Our concern also extends to the suppression of support for Palestinian liberation in the US academy and K-12 schools, where scholarly criticism of Israeli human rights violations or calls to support Palestinians are increasingly equated with antisemitism and even forbidden by law. As critical and engaged pedagogues, we reject the toxic binary discourse that frames Jewish safety and Palestinian freedom as opposing causes. Jewish activists have long stood hand in hand with Palestinians and their allies in opposing Zionism and calling for an end to Israel's atrocities. 

[...]

We believe that teachers can play a significant role in the end of the Israeli occupation of Palestine and the Palestinian people. We must keep pushing past the limits of progressive pedagogies and help our students develop imaginations that can envision an end to the occupation and a future in which Palestinians, and all those in Palestine, live and thrive in freedom and dignity.

Not to mention, the letter calls for including the history of Palestine in the California Ethnic Studies Curriculum. 

In addition, through a public records request, PDE received a presentation from the school district titled “Israel and Palestine” that accused Israel of “apartheid.” This presentation appears to be a lesson given to students. At one point, the presentation says that “regular people” should support movements that call on companies to no longer do business with Israel. 

"As we've seen at so many schools since October 7th, High Tech High has an anti-Israel problem and an indoctrination problem. It is not their job, nor is it appropriate, for any of their staff to behave as activists in the classroom or on campus,” PDE Director of Outreach Erika Sanzi told Townhall.

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