A Virginia parent-teacher association (PTA) official was asked to resign over the weekend after she said “let them die” in response to people protesting critical race theory.
“Today, the Virginia PTA executive committee requested and received the resignation of Michelle Leete, who served as Vice President of Training,” the Virginia PTA said in a statement on Saturday. “While not speaking in her role within the Virginia PTA, we do not condone the choice of words used during a public event on Thursday, July 15, 2021.”
Leete was captured on video last Thursday outside a school board meeting in Fairfax County, leading a counterprotest to critical race theory backlash. The official, who is also vice president of the county’s NAACP, said, “Let’s deny this off-key band of people that are anti-education, anti-teacher, anti-equity, anti-history, anti-racial reckoning. … Let them die.”
“Let them die,” says @FairfaxNAACP leader Michelle Leete at protest before @fcpsnews board. Folks against critical race theory are here, with protestors including Leete opposing them. It’ll be 🧨 tonight. Watch at https://t.co/KuScNenTVQ pic.twitter.com/Csb5faEYKG
— Asra Q. Nomani (@AsraNomani) July 15, 2021
“To my knowledge, CRT is not being taught in FCPS or any other public school in the country,” Leete told CNN in an email. Shortly after her resignation, the local NAACP defended her harsh comments.
“We stand firmly by our 1st Vice President and her work in the past, present and future, and are extremely disappointed that her long track record of tireless work and dedication within the Fairfax County community has been so easily disregarded and devalued,” the group said.
Fairfax County is just one of several Virginia counties embroiled in a critical race theory controversy. As The Federalist reported in May, the schools funneled tens of thousands of dollars to a New York consulting group to push diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives.
Scott Mineo, the founder of the group Parents Against Critical Race Theory in nearby Loudoun County, told The Federalist the PTA’s statement on Leete is “meaningless.”
“Anybody that disagrees with them, they use intimidation as a form to try and push acceptance,” Mineo said. “So, in other words, ‘do what we say or we’re going to call you a racist.’ And that’s their default response.”
The national PTA has been a major force for critical race theory and the shuttering of schools. In December, the group released a statement claiming it is “engaged in, and is committed to, deep, program-wide work and advocating on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) for parents and students alike.”
Virginia’s PTA chapter President Pamela Croom threatened to shut down the Fairfax PTA last month for a “disregard for the authority of Virginia PTA,” after frustration with residents voicing concern over identity politics seeping into the schools.