Experts are alarmed by an explicitly white nationalist homeschooling curriculum circulating online and picking up new adherents.
The recently launched "School of the West" curriculum offers only a few materials at this point on standard subjects like math and science, but the site also includes content focusing on what's called "white wellbeing" that promises to help children ages four and older “understand the gift of being born a member of Westernkind and the qualities that separate us from the other races,” reported The Daily Beast.
"This blatant white-nationalist ideology is infused into some of the site’s lessons on conventional subjects, as well," reported Mark Hay. "Its history materials, for example, falsely teach that the notion European colonization led to the spread of new diseases that decimated indigenous populations is not established historical fact, but an anti-white myth."
The site lists its founder as "Brant Danger," but The Daily Beast and Anti-Defamation League extremism researcher Mark Pitcavage have identified him as former Arizona teacher Brant Williams, who left his job with Page Unified School District last spring but has said that working in a school in a largely Native American community had reinforced his racist views.
“Here’s the thing with kids,” he recently told [an] interviewer. “If I told them that aliens came down and made these people in Hollywood and now everyone in Hollywood is aliens, they’d go, ‘Yeah, OK, alright.’ When you develop trust with your students, they’ll believe pretty much everything you say.”
Fans of the curriculum, which promotes the notoriously antisemitic Institute for Historical Review as a reliable resource and identifies white nationalist Jason Köhne as a major influence, are promoting the School of the West in social media groups opposed to "critical race theory," and experts are concerned that might draw some parents into right-wing extremism.
“Our political environment is more receptive to this sort of messaging at the moment,” said Amy Cooter, a sociologist who studies white nationalism. “I’m sure that some people who’ve thought of themselves as not racist will buy into this."