Father calls out son's 'political spectrum' assignment for pushing biased agenda onto students: 'This is 1984-esque propaganda'

Matt DeFouw was taken aback when his son, a high school student, texted him a picture of an assignment that had been given to his class. The 10th-grade students at Valleyview Secondary School in Kamloops, a city in British Columbia, Canada, were supposed to be learning about differing views in partisan politics — but instead, they seemed to be getting schooled on the biased political stance of the person who had prepared the lesson.

DeFouw took to his Facebook page on Monday to post his son’s assignment, writing “I cannot let this slide. It must be exposed, discussed, and then expediently rectified.” Explaining the image, he said his son whited out his answers and wrote the teacher-provided answers in their place.

Matt DeFouw took to Facebook to post a photo of his son’s assignment for school, whiting out his son’s answers to emphasize the correct answers the teacher wrote down. (Photo: Matt DeFouw via Facebook)
Matt DeFouw took to Facebook to post a photo of his son’s assignment for school, whiting out his son’s answers to emphasize the correct answers the teacher wrote down. (Photo: Matt DeFouw via Facebook)

DeFouw told Global News one question on the paper asked the respondent to identify which person is racist. The “correct” answer was “right-wing people.” The assignment further described a right-winger as a “person who believes that convicted murders should be hanged, that women should stay home and be mothers, and that Canada should restrict immigration,” according to the publication.

DeFouw, who identifies as a right-wing conservative, texted his son, “Wow, you have to bring that home,” after seeing the paper pop up on his screen. He posted it on his own social media, at which point word got back to Kamloops-Thompson School District.

DeFouw told Yahoo Lifestyle that he requested a meeting with the school board and asked administrators to launch an investigation.

In a letter that was shared on Facebook, assistant superintendent Barb Hamblett said she met with the teacher in question, who “acknowledged that the Social Studies worksheet did not present a balanced view of the political spectrum and it was an over simplication of a very complex issue.”

DeFouw says students deserve to be taught the whole story. “You have conservatives … being painted as misogynist, racist xenophobes who want to enact a brutal police state that hang people,” he said to Global News.

Even some of the students were dubious about the lesson. “It’s basically a teacher saying, ‘This is my opinion — learn it and it will be yours too,'” one student told Global News. Another called it “not really fair.”

DeFouw’s son voiced his opinion through his answers, responding to the question “Who is a racist?” with “racists,” the dad told Global News.

DeFouw doesn’t feel discipline is in order and says he’d rather everyone learn from the experience and open up a dialogue about the complexities of politics.

UPDATE 10/9/2018: Yahoo Lifestyle caught up with DeFouw on Tuesday to talk further about the incident. He said this was not an isolated incident, and certainly not the first time he’s witnessed or heard of this biased approach toward political education in schools throughout Canada and “the entire Western world,” for that matter. “Everyone says this bias has been going on for years. We know what’s been going on by the things our kids say. That’s why I jumped on it. This is the first physical example. Here’s hardcore proof of it.”

For this reason,DeFouw says, he hasn’t gotten any criticism from other parents. “This latest instance smacks of indoctrination. It doesn’t really lend itself to the educational process. This is how I feel, and the collective opinion of my peers. We’ve got to get this out of the school system and replace it with objective learning.”

He emphasizes, “I absolutely love teachers and the instiution of education. I’m not on a witch hunt of individuals. I do not want to see punitive measures taken on the teacher. This is not a lone wolf thing. It might get fixed for one class, or one teacher, or one province. That is not my goal.”

Finally, DeFouw sweetly wants to make sure it’s known that his son is “doesn’t really text me in class. He did it once when the school was on lockdown, and the second time was this. He’s a pretty good boy.”

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