Social Justice in the Classroom: Megyn Kelly and Bill Maher Revisit her Decision to Withdraw Kids from NYC Schools

In a Friday interview with Bill Maher, Megyn Kelly revisited her Nov. 2020 decision to remove her two children from private NYC schools. Politics aside, I’ve long been an admirer of the Fox News and NBC personality. Her strong, unyielding opinions are quick to stir controversy, but they nonetheless incite discussion on issues that should be questioned or revisited. 

Rather than focus on her controversial past in the media industry, Maher and Kelly discussed partisan cable news, “victimhood” in the 21st century, and the ways in which school policies and curriculums are changing to encompass anti-racism and social justice trends. When Maher asked Kelly to revisit her and her husband’s decision to withdraw their children from New York private schools, she said she “loved their schools,” which were “definitely leftist,” but it wasn’t an issue until the schools “went hard left” and “took a really hard turn toward the social justice stuff.” Other parents from the schools, of mixed races, had also complained about the efforts. 

She described her 8-year-old son’s experience in his school’s “three-week experimental trans-education program,” which she felt was more an effort to encourage them to question their own sexuality rather than support transgender people. After widespread confusion in the third-grade class, enough parents complained that the school issued an apology

Her youngest son, enrolled in Kindergarten, was “told to write a letter to the Cleveland Indians objecting to their mascot.” Kelly questioned the child’s ability to spell “Cleveland” before he was “activated.” Maher added that he’s heard from plenty of left-leaning parents that their “kids are not ready to be told they’re white supremacists” and read a letter from Kelly’s former school. It used profound language like “there’s a killer cop sitting at every school where white children learn,” “I’m tired of white people reveling in their state-sanctioned depravity and snuffing out black life with no consequences” and “as black bodies drop like flies around us by white hands.” Kelly went on to affirm her stance as a civil rights advocate and distance herself from the inflammatory Fox host Tucker Carlson. 

While her comments are controversial, there is merit in Kelly’s decision. Forcing awareness of racism and transphobia into the minds of children too young to form those judgments brings implicit bias to the front of their minds and gives them room to wrestle with the topic, rather than accept it robotically. If a student wants to become a police officer, they should not be discouraged by their school’s inflammatory statement. After a summer of racially-charged violence and unrest, school boards should seek to unify students, rather than inform them at an early age of the treatment they should expect based on their skin pigmentation or gender identity.