Holden Walter-Warner, Daily Mail, February 4, 2021
A principal at a Portland school drew the ire of some parents after she called out the education system for being built on ‘white supremacy.’
Melissa Baran, the principal of Sherwood High School, made her comments speaking during a school board session on January 20.
Baran made note of underrepresented students, saying, ‘Historically, our under-represented students, our most vulnerable students that are experiencing a variety of different circumstances, that the system hasn’t been working for them.’
Baran then said, ‘Education as a whole was built on the system of oppression and white supremacy, and we are trying to talk about that more.
‘And we’re trying to really examine what is the system moving forward, and how do we make sure that what we’re doing doesn’t perpetuate those differences — doesn’t perpetuate those gaps that we have been talking about as a district for a long time.’
A deleted post in the Sherwood Community Info Group (Original) Facebook page referred to Baran as a ‘BLM Marxist.’
The school district is located in an area that used to lean Republican, but now trends more towards the Democrats, making it ripe for political infighting.
The Sherwood School District previously shared anti-racist materials on their website, one of which called for people to vote Democrat, leading to a removal and apology from the district.
While at least some parents have lashed out at Baran, she does have the support of district superintendent Heather Cordie.
‘During that presentation to the board, Mrs. Baran shared true facts — specifically, that the system of education in general, in its current format, does not work for all students, families, or staff members; that the system of education has a historical context of oppression and white supremacy; and that there is a need to move forward in a way that no longer perpetuates systematic marginalization of under-represented student groups,’ Cordie wrote in a letter last Friday.
Cordie also called out the Facebook post that targeted Baran and noted the principal’s status as the sole Black leader in the school district.