Virginia Democrats have blocked the nomination of Suparna Dutta, Gov. Glenn Youngin’s pick for the state board of education.
Dutta is the co-founder of a parent group that criticized the admission standards at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, claiming that it abandoned merit-based admissions to reduce the number of Asian-Americans admitted.
She is an advocate of STEM education and is an engineer by profession. However, Democrats say she is unqualified for the board because she has no background in education.
Dutta’s nomination was blocked by an amendment introduced by Sen. Ghazala Hashmi, who accused her of having an alignment with “very extreme and right-wing white supremacist groups.” The claim was refuted by Winsome Sears, Virginia’s first female black lieutenant governor who called the accusation “absurd.”
The nomination of Dutta is seen as a blow to Youngkin’s efforts to empower parents in education, as Democrats continue to resist his initiatives.
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