Loudoun Schools Superintendent Calls on Business Leaders to Defend Shared Values

Loudoun County Public Schools Superintendent Scott Ziegler highlighted the importance of a strong pipeline from the school district to Loudoun-based businesses and called on businesses to defend the shared value of equity during a Chamber of Commerce event Friday morning in Ashburn.

The PolicyMaker Series event, held at the Schools Administration Building, focused on the state of workforce recovery in the county and featured addresses from both Ziegler and Virginia Secretary of Labor Megan Healy, and was attended by dozens of lawmakers and business representatives from across the commonwealth. 

Ziegler highlighted several of the school district’s programs that he said are training and preparing productive citizens and members of the Loudoun County workforce, particularly in computer science. He also mentioned projects that his administration is eying for the next few years, including  international baccalaureate, fine arts, and study of justice programs.

He emphasized the changing demographics in county schools. Twenty-five years ago, over 80% of students were white. Since then, the population of the county has nearly quadrupled and students of color comprise the majority in the district, he said. The district’s equity work, including studies of hiring practices, treatment of students, and teacher trainings on race issues, have drawn criticism to the school district. Opponents of the district’s equity work say that Critical Race Theory is being applied to the district’s curriculum.

“Our detractors would have you believe that we are teaching and indoctrinating students with Critical Race Theory in our schools. That’s something that’s simply not happening,” Ziegler said. “What we in education call equity and equity training, which I define as the practice of acknowledging culture and respecting and affirming identity. It’s what you in business would call diversity training.”

He called on business leaders to affirm practices of racial equality and inclusion.

“I would challenge you as a group this morning to join us and speak up when our community and when our school system is attacked because of these values that we share,” he said.

Healy’s speech preceded Zielger’s and spoke to the challenges facing Virginia’s workforce as a result of the pandemic, and building the workforce for the future. She stressed the importance of providing paid internships, apprenticeships, and on-the-job training, especially to financially disadvantaged people and people of color.

“I always say you can’t be what you can’t see. … They do not have social capital,” Healy said.

But, accessing those minority groups is a goal of businesses, she said, and companies want not only a talented workforce, but a diverse workforce.

She emphasized that for businesses to come to Virginia and thrive, a capable workforce is crucial. That, she said, requires recruiting workers and implementing retention strategies. She cited shortages of teachers and healthcare workers coming out of the pandemic, and said that employers must incentivize and structure jobs to appeal to a changing world and changing family dynamics that make working a challenge for some parents.

“I’m almost at the point where, I don’t know if should say this publicly, but some industries, do we actually have the people in Virginia to do those jobs?”

19 thoughts on “Loudoun Schools Superintendent Calls on Business Leaders to Defend Shared Values

  • 2021-09-24 at 2:57 pm
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    I’ve often wondered how some critics of LCPS expect their children to function in the real world after graduation. Yes, education must be age-appropriate. But you cannot shelter a student to the extent that they can’t handle diversity upon graduation. A diverse workforce makes Loudoun stronger. Perhaps look at it this way (though it may sound trite): “A lot of different flowers make a bouquet.”

    • 2021-09-24 at 5:39 pm
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      Tim – should an employee be told he has to give his hours to a Hispanic coworker because the Hispanic worker’s father or grandfather was cheated by his boss?

  • 2021-09-24 at 4:54 pm
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    I’ve always wonder why private schools were open during COVID and LCPS couldn’t. I have to wonder to we really have the best and brightest in the school administration staff.

  • 2021-09-24 at 5:36 pm
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    I’m always amazed how the term people of color is used as if all non-white people are treated the same. Once you hear that you know you’re about to get some high grade nonsense.

  • 2021-09-24 at 5:44 pm
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    The public, including businesses need the truth. Is it a fact that the NEA and AFT use unions dues to support socialist’s campaigns? Did these unions support Ralph Northam’s campaign? Are socialists/communists taking over our public schools? Where does Open Society Foundation fit into these narratives? When you have these unions tied to serious issues in regards to socialism, the parents no matter their color, gender or socioeconomic background, they deserve to speak out. It appears their comments are being squashed out. When you silence a group of tax payers who send their children to their counties schools, you silence their anger. Hear them out. Use their anger productively to help bring about change. It almost presents like it is the school board’s way or the highway. We all have a freedom to speak. And their voices need to be heard. Asking for the businesses to support this seems like pandering. Parents obviously don’t in general have the monies these businesses have. Give the power back to the people. The parents and grandparents. Be transparent.

  • 2021-09-24 at 8:39 pm
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    “to defend the shared value of equity ”

    There goes Ziegler pushing the CRT garbage to our local biz leaders. No Ziegler, we don’t share this racist value that uses skin color in making determinations.

    Equality is merit based and COLOR BLIND. THAT is what we teach our children.

  • 2021-09-24 at 11:26 pm
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    Let’s come back from NeverNeverLand and deal with reality.

    1. Just this past week, Superintendent Ziegler’s instructional administrators reported in a Curriculum and Instruction committee meeting that LCPS is “[h]osting Catalyzing Change Book Study with 300 teachers and administrators”. What is Catalyzing Change? It is woke, Marxist propaganda that claims any grouping of students by ability level is not “equitable” and must be abandoned. It forbids having advanced classes where less talented students cannot keep up. It is like telling Amazon they may not innovate if mom-and-pop stores cannot keep up.

    2. In that same “book study”, teachers will be told that the ONLY reason for differences in average student outcomes is due to “system racism” that must be “dismantled”. That is textbook CRT.

    3. LCPS has eliminated the Algrebra I option for students (without special exception) in 7th grade. Currently, about 30-40% of LCPS students take Algebra I in the 7th grade. Thus, these students will encounter trigonometry and calculus at least one year later than current talented students do. LCPS is literally eliminating advanced math classes in front of our eyes and journalists won’t report it.

    Does anyone think ANY of those business leaders support any of this? Does anyone think that business leaders believe talent and innovation should be suppressed in the name of “equity” and mediocrity? The LCPS Supt literally received his “Ed.D” from a paper mill ranked the 8th cheapest in the US. Does anyone believe a word this man says?

  • 2021-09-25 at 10:08 am
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    Were each and every one of these “business leaders” who participated in this event checked for proper, verifiable Loudoun County residency?

    If they aren’t residents of Loudoun, then why are they being given access to LCPS?

  • 2021-09-25 at 12:38 pm
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    Diversity and equity are two very different concepts. Diversity implies inclusion, whereas equity mandates the same outcome despite ability or effort. In a diverse workplace, all people are given the same opportunity. Healy’s quote solidifies the fact that opportunities will be given to a certain few for the sake of equity. The implication here is that the workforce is systemically racist, which is a tenant of CRT. And Ziegler says there’s no connection?

  • 2021-09-25 at 1:52 pm
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    You’ve been brainwashed into thinking the obscenity LCPS is pushing is “diversity.”

    A talented and skilled workforce makes Loudoun stronger. Diversity is meaningless.

  • 2021-09-25 at 1:57 pm
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    Scott Ziegler is the chief political officer of the modern era. He is the most dangerous man in the county.

  • 2021-09-26 at 8:01 am
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    What you know thats not so will hurt worse than what you don’t know.
    1. Do you know what is involved in setting up an IB Program? If you did you would never believe what the Superintendent just said.
    2. LCPS cares about diversity – really? Please explain how the poorest and most diverse group of families in Loudoun are NOT ALLOWED to attend the elementary school their children could walk to from the Plaza Street area.
    3. LCPS cares about apprenticeships and on the job training opportunities. If so then why hasn’t the Monroe Tech capacity been increased? For years the students who want HVAC, Auto mechanics, culinary studies etc have been artificially restricted so the administration can claim high marks as measured strictly by. college admissions.
    4. LCPS is emphasizing high tech training. If so then why hasn’t EVERY high school been allowed to teach the first two year transcript numbered program of AOS? This integrated 3 years of math and science inquiry based course would be another method of allowing more diverse students to participate. I doubt this school board even knows the real reason this is not done. SAD!

  • 2021-09-26 at 12:39 pm
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    Ha, some cavernous people think there isn’t diversity in our schools? Everyone, take a pleasant walk in the school walk zones and meet courteous, respectful, and warmhearted students of many different ethnic heritage. A beautiful flower garden. So, the “equity” tyrants want to yank those precious flowers from grounds of private homes and businesses and smash the petals together to create a lovely Loudoun bouquet? And thus, the term: CRT GANG! The Lord of Loudoun Jesus Christ won’t let them get away with ruining His County. They will be punished severely. “He who digs a pit will fall into it; and he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him.” (!!) Proverbs 26:27

  • 2021-09-27 at 4:56 am
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    Diversity is bad for the host especially if the cannot read and write and are of no use in the workforce, a by-product if you will of Ziggy and the School Boards social justice campaign.

  • 2021-09-27 at 10:46 am
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    I’m thinking the business leaders were sitting through this presentation wondering how the incompetent crazy people lecturing them achieved their public jobs.

  • 2021-09-27 at 11:28 am
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    Socialist Democrats love and cheer “Activists” when they support the agenda……..but when “Activists” don’t support the agenda, the “Activists” must be ostracized, isolated, and shutdown by any means necessary.

  • 2021-09-27 at 4:15 pm
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    Those who think diversity is just a word that socialists and woke activists toss around probably don’t ever deal with people that aren’t exactly like them. What scares me is that I think they’d prefer a world where everyone was just like them.

  • 2021-09-27 at 7:30 pm
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    Demographics. In the 2020–2021 school year, LCPS students were 43.9% White, 24.4% Asian, 18.3% Hispanic/Latino, 7.1% Black/African American, 5.7% Multiracial, 0.6% Native American, and 0.1% Native Hawaiian.
    How again do students of color represent the majority?

  • 2021-09-27 at 11:15 pm
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    Once again, it is made perfectly clear by Dr. Ziegler and LCPS that “equality” is not what they are after for minorities. This is the old Democrat standard of pandering to minorities for votes by calling special treatment “equality”.
    Meanwhile, by eliminating courses like Algebra 1 until a certain time and holding the stronger performers back, LCPS ensures that our kids will be punished for being smart, so that the kids who are not performing can feel better about themselves. As the commercial says “That’s not how this works, that’s not how any of this works”. Our kids are having to take courses in college that they could have taken in high school because LCPS simply refuses to let high performers perform.

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