Through a Missouri Sunshine Law request, Francis Howell Families has obtained all emails between LaGarrett King, Ph.D. and Francis Howell School District (FHSD). Dr. King is a professor at the University of Missouri whose biography boasts one of his four areas of expertise is “Race Critical Theories and Knowledge.”  Furthermore, Dr. King’s own CV (resume) notes that he teaches the course at Mizzou called, “Critical Race Theory in Education.” In fall 2020 the FHSD Board of Education approved hiring Dr. King (for $15,000) as a consultant to help develop the Black History course now offered at FHSD high schools.

The memo to the Board of Education supporting Dr. King’s services states, in part:

“Support from Dr. LaGarrett King will be instrumental in developing a new [Black] History course to be offered at all three high schools in the District beginning in the 2021-22 school year… Dr. King will provide training, professional development, curriculum audit, and support to our leadership team as we develop and design this course during the 2020-21 school year.  The guidance and support of Dr. King will ensure that the [Black] History course is accurate, relevant, and engaging, and that our teachers are empowered with the necessary strategies to teach this course effectively.”

The emails between FHSD and Dr. King show that Dr. King was, in fact, “instrumental in developing the new Black History course.”  Dr. King’s initial, now infamous, Zoom call with the FHSD Black History curriculum development team can be viewed HERE.

As stated in the preface to this report, the majority of the emails are logistical in nature; however, the remainder show that seemingly no decision about the course content occurred without Dr. King’s approval.  While FHSD staff may very well have “written” the content, they did so after being trained by Dr. King, of all people.

One of the more troubling emails is an exchange on Oct. 8-9, 2020 with Dr. King, who knows not to provide too much transparency when it comes to parents and the public, as the September 25, 2020 Zoom call makes absolutely clear.  See Section 12 of the email report below for the contents of that email, which includes this response:

12.2 King to FHSD; Friday, October 9, 2020; 1:20 PM
Hello [FHSD],
Thanks for the course description. Politically, I think this is a safe course description. Can we
speak more about this Tuesday? Don’t want to put anything on email. But for the sake of
description, this can be run in the course description.
LaGarrett J. King, Ph.D.

Download the entire report and emails HERE (15 MB)

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