Ibañez v. Albemarle County School Board
Description: A group of diverse parents and their children are suing the Albemarle County School Board for enacting discriminatory policies and indoctrinating students in radical ideology. In 2019, the school board enacted a policy that violates students’ civil rights by treating them differently based on race, and by compelling them to affirm and support ideas contrary to their deeply held moral, philosophical, and religious beliefs.
Virginia parents appeal to remove racially divisive curriculum from schools
WHO: Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys
WHAT: Available for media interviews following hearing in Ibañez v. Albemarle County School Board
WHEN: Immediately following hearing, which begins at 10 a.m. EDT, Tuesday, Sept. 12
WHERE: Virginia Supreme Court, 100 N. 9th St., Richmond. To schedule an interview, contact ADF Media Relations Specialist Hayden Sledge at (205) 767-4705.
RICHMOND, Va. – Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing a diverse group of parents and their children in a lawsuit against the Albemarle County School Board will be available for media interviews Tuesday following oral arguments before the Court of Appeals of Virginia in Ibañez v. Albemarle County School Board.
In the lawsuit, the five families are challenging the school board’s in-class implementation of a discriminatory policy that indoctrinates students in, and compels them to say they agree with, a racially divisive ideology. The families appealed in June 2022 after a lower court dismissed their case.
“Every student deserves to be treated equally under the law, regardless of race or religion. Public schools can’t impose demeaning stereotypes on students based on these characteristics,” said ADF Senior Counsel Vincent Wagner, who will be arguing in court on behalf of the families. “Parents have the fundamental right to know what their kids are being taught in public schools and to protect them from policies and curriculum that compel them to affirm harmful ideologies. We urge the court to take a hard look at the school board’s discriminatory policy.”
In 2019, the board enacted a policy that requires schools to take actions based in critical race theory, a radical ideology that forces students and teachers to view everything and everybody through the lens of race. The policy violates students’ civil rights by treating them differently and stereotyping them based on race, and by compelling them to affirm and support the board’s ideology, even if it is contrary to their deeply held moral and religious beliefs. Parents in the school district are not allowed to opt their children out of classes that teach this ideology, and the school labels any opinion not aligned with the curriculum as “racist” and threatens to punish dissent based on its redefinition of “racism.”
Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom, free speech, parental rights, and the sanctity of life.
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- Leif Le Mahieu: ‘Focus on their skin color’: Parent speaks out against school’s ‘racist’ curriculum (Daily Wire, 2022-04-28)
- Mary Margaret Olohan: Parents accuse Virginia school district of teaching students to ‘discriminate based on race’ (Daily Signal, 2021-12-22)
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Vincent Wagner serves as senior counsel with the Center for Parental Rights at Alliance Defending Freedom where he safeguards parents’ rights to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children. Before joining ADF in 2022, Wagner served the state of Arkansas as deputy solicitor general. Prior to his government service, Wagner was an associate with Baker Botts L.L.P. Wagner earned his B.A., summa cum laude, from Harding University and his J.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. Immediately after law school, he clerked for then-Chief Judge Ed Carnes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. Wagner is admitted to the state bars of Texas, Arkansas, and Virginia, the U.S. Supreme Court, and various lower federal courts.