Kansas math teacher resigns over CRT training and renewed mask mandates, gets fined

Kansas school reportedly spends $400,000 on critical race theory training for teachers

A Kansas elementary school teacher resigned from his job following a mask requirement for unvaccinated teachers, coupled with its recent critical race theory push, and was subsequently fined by the district. 

"That was my final straw," Josiah Enyart said, referring to the Shawnee Mission School District sending an email renewing its mask mandate for all students and unvaccinated teachers on July 25.

When the 6th grade math teacher resigned from Comanche Elementary School in Overland Park, however, the district told him he’d have to pay a $1,000  "liquidation penalty" for resigning after a specific deadline in his contract. 

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"I will be bringing my stuff, but I don’t plan on bringing a check," Enyart told the Sentinel, a local nonprofit news outlet.

Enyart resigned just days after the masks requirements were announced, but his frustrations with the school had been building for a few years. In 2014, the school announced a $20 million technology update that gave every student Ipads or Macbooks, which had Enyart questioning, "Why do we need all of this?"

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Then, the district implemented the Deep Equity critical race theory training for teachers. The district spent $400,000 on the training, which told teachers to "reject and resist any parents who disagree with" critical race theory, the Sentinel reported. 

"It’s all critical race theory stuff," Enyart said. "That was kind of the start where I realized, they’re really trying to bring this in and make it something."

"I can’t believe the lack of transparency with curriculums, teacher trainings, in class activities based on the trainings, and top-down regulations used as indoctrination tools," he told Fox News. 

"As a teacher, I can see these things, but after talking to hundreds of parents, they can’t. Why wouldn’t the public school system want the parents to know everything that their child is being exposed to?  Why aren’t the parents being asked before these decisions are being made?  And when they do, why do the board decisions not match the data on the surveys? As a district that prides itself on being ‘data driven,’ they do not seem to be following any real data on any of the issues."

He also voiced displeasure with how the school handled teaching students during the pandemic, lamenting that while teaching remotely, "district leaders did not give parents or teachers a sense of control or accountability where we could help students succeed."

"I couldn’t do anything but give them no grade," Enyart said. 

"What a 12th grader has to know and get done to graduate is what a 5th grader had to do 40 years ago," he added.

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The 13-year teaching veteran is also pulling his own children from the district and will homeschool them this coming school year. 

"I’m not going to continue to have my kids bossed around by these people and have no power as a parent, no power as a teacher, and for my kids to have no say," he said. 

"Our students are going to learn things they haven’t had an opportunity to learn in a long time," Enyart said.

Now, a GoFundMe page has been established to help him pay the $1,000 penalty to the district after its board rejected his appeal to the fine. 

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"The board has decided to move forward with the fine assessment. It is on my heart to compensate Josiah from a community of grateful people, who appreciate his willingness to take a stand and say ‘no more.’ He has put his livelihood on the line for our kids, and Shawnee Mission has lost an excellent teacher and one of the few men left to teach our boys and girls," the GoFundMe page, which has exceeded the $1,000 goal, says. 

The Shawnee Mission School District did not immediately respond to Fox News’s request for comment on the resignation.

"Bottom line is, as much as I want to be there for the students in my previous school, my first priority is the safety and well-being of my own children. I am saddened that I had to give up my career with the district simply to have the right to raise my children as I see fit," Enyart added in comments to Fox News.