Parents at Thomas Jefferson School for Science and Technology fought to maintain the enterance exam policy, but Virginia State PTA is threatening to disband the school's PTA over their resistance.
The story from Daily Wire explains the fight was over the inclusion of a math and science entrance exam meant to prove whether or not prospective students were proficient learners in these subjects. The Fairfax County school board got rid of it late last year in the name of “diversity” after complaints about the racial demographics of Thomas Jefferson’s student body, which was 73% Asian.
But the school’s PTA pushed back against the Critical Race Theory-based policy. They elected a committee that had a majority wanting to keep the school’s admissions test. But Virginia State PTA demanded TJHSST's principal Ann Bonitatibus be allowed to vote, after the school’s PTA president and a group of parents lobbied for it.
That created a tie. This was despite the fact a survey conducted by the school’s PTA showed that 80% of parents wanted the entry exam to stay.
“The Virginia PTA likes its Asian and minority parents when we are submissive and compliant, but when we question FCPS policies or actions, you turn on the parents,” said former school committee member Asra Nomani.
Back on June 23rd, TJHSST announced the newest round of admissions since eliminating the admissions test.
In a statement by Superintendent Scott S. Brabrand:
“Last year, Fairfax County Public Schools moved to ensure increased access and opportunity to TJ for students with an aptitude and passion for STEM. The data around TJ’s prospective freshmen class speaks volumes to the fact that when we truly center our work on equity, all of our students have an opportunity to shine.”
The announcement then lists the racial makeup for the incoming class of 2025:
- "Black students increased from 1.23% (2020-21) to 7.09%."
- "Hispanic students increased from 3.29% (2020-21) to 11.27%."
- "White students increased from 17.70% (2020-21) to 22.36%."
- "Asian students continue to constitute a majority of the class at 54.36%."
The same day of this announcement, Virginia PTA State President Pamel Croom wrote to the TJHSST PTA a scathing letter admonishing them for a “lack of respect and disregard for authority” to the state PTA’s wishes.
The rest of the letter lists reasons why Virginia State PTA is threatening to disband the PTA at Thomas Jefferson School for Science and Technology.
Harry Jackson, the first black man elected the school PTA’s President-Elect, condemned the state-level behavior in a comment to Washington Free Beacon.
"This is how they welcome this new diverse class, by taking away their support. This is the most diverse class in history, and Virginia PTA takes out their support structures. It’s dictatorial."
An anti-discrimination lawsuit against the school’s change in admission policies is ongoing.