Child Protection League (CPL) had the honor of being asked to author an article about Social Emotional Learning (SEL) for the Spring 2023 issue of the Christian publication RenewaNation Magazine. RenewaNation is a highly influential national organization that inspires and equips families, churches, and schools to give children a biblical worldview. Read the article in downloadable PDF written by Vice President Bonnie Gasper.
The core principle of the SEL framework directly contradict biblical principles. Contrary to its promotional materials, SEL is not about academic achievement. SEL is a charade, a fake ‘education’ littered with language and terms that sound wonderful. Don’t be fooled by any of it, because SEL teaches a race-based, politicized worldview that doesn’t align with reality or with truth.
Unfortunately, some Christian schools are adopting SEL curriculum without closely examining its content. CPL has written extensively about the SEL deception in Christian education.
The following excerpts (reprinted with permission) are from the RenewaNation article: Social Emotional Learning is Masquerading as Education.
According to Webster’s dictionary, transformational is an adjective concerned with transformation, especially linguistic transformation. That’s because words mean things. They determine how and what we ‘think’.
Academia is saturated with people whose thinking has been fundamentally changed by transformational education. Marinating in cultural Marxist principles has resulted in carefully crafted pedagogies and programs that fully embed them.
What is Social Emotional Learning?
Today, American schools are immersed in an innocuous sounding pedagogy called Social Emotional Learning (SEL). The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), which is directly linked with the United Nations global initiatives for education, is the founding and lead SEL organization. They define SEL as “the process through which all young people and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain supportive relationships, and make responsible and caring decisions.”
That sounds like wonderful language, right? However, it goes on to say SEL will advance “educational equity and excellence” and “help address various forms of inequity” and create “safe, healthy, and just communities.” That is deceptively loaded language.
SEL is the umbrella or mothership carrying all the controversial ideologies like Critical Race Theory (CRT), Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, (DEI), Gender Inclusion, Cultural Competencies, Comprehensive Sex Ed (CSE) and Mindfulness training. These ideologies influence every content area, because to be considered effective, SEL must be “systemic” and embedded in every subject at every grade level.
The innocuous language disguises the danger of SEL. SEL is simply transformational education repackaged. The focus is not about acquiring academic knowledge, but rather indoctrinating students with the attitudes, values, and beliefs required to ensure full acceptance of unbiblical equity, social justice, and identities to bring about cultural revolution.
Understanding the dangers of SEL requires Biblical discernment.
Unfortunately, many Christians don’t understand how they are being deceived. Many have adopted SEL language, ideologies, and assumptions without examining them through the lens of Scripture. Sometimes it is because their own ‘thinking’ has already been reshaped by the narratives. Sometimes, they don’t recognize how they are being manipulated by spiritual and psychological warfare which accompanies every attack on truth. And many Christians believe the only way to ‘love’ others and not be ‘judgmental’ is to simply affirm everything including false beliefs and doctrine. And when Christian students are labeled extremists or inherently privileged, social justice demands they give up their voice and they meekly comply. Christian parents must recognize how SEL erases the true identities of their children by assigning false narratives about race, human sexuality, and justice through curriculum.
Comprehensive Sex Ed (CSE) further destroys a child’s identity by denying the Biblical and biologically verifiable truth of two genders, God’s design for human sexuality and marriage. Instead, children are taught gender is
merely a social construct created,not by God but by our own feelings and desires. They are taught sexual pleasure is their right and are encouraged to explore every kind of sexual practice early and often. CSE is steeped in the Marxist goal of sexualizing children. Therefore, CSE views children as simply higher order animals with no unique purpose or meaning….
SEL embraces false identities.
SEL is not ‘safe.’ When Satan said to Eve…’did God really say?’…he was planting seeds of doubt about her identity. SEL is no different and goes even further by demanding that children adopt and demonstrate affirmation of what the state has decided are acceptable values, attitudes, and beliefs. In fact, SEL compiles a massive database tracking every child through constant surveys and assessments to assess their progress toward these objectives…