How Newsela is pushing the 1619 Project to young students’ classrooms

September 15, 2023

By Accuracy In Media

Of all the content partners Newsela has signed up with, none has a scholarship quite as questionable as that of the 1619 Project.

Dozens of historians with credentials much more impeccable than Nikole Hannah-Jones, the journalist at The New York Times who created the 1619 Project, have “eviscerated” the work. Multiple school districts across the country have since banned it from being taught. But that has long been reported. 

The danger is this: Teachers are still able to teach the 1619 Project under the radar. When teachers tell parents about Newsela as a resource, they’re able to pitch it as a valuable education resource that provides appropriate content for children. When teachers use Newsela as the school year goes on, it’s already trusted – which allows for lessons like the 1619 Project to be buried among other lessons with parents none the wiser.

Consider this content piece from Newsela called “The 1619 Project: The brutality of American capitalism begins on the plantation,” which blames capitalism for slavery, which runs to 5467 words and is recommended for K-12 kids at five different reading levels.    

“In a capitalist society that goes low, wages are depressed as businesses compete over the price, not the quality, of goods; so-called unskilled workers are typically incentivized through punishments, not promotions; inequality reigns and poverty spreads,” the writer at the 1619 Project wrote for Newsela about capitalism today, echoing the supposed slavery roots of America’s economic system.  

Like the other race-based content providers for Newsela, the 1619 Project attacks anyone who fails to follow the line that America was founded on racism and continues to prosper because of racism, even if those malcontents are Black people.

It should not be taught as history in, as Newsela itself claims, 90 percent of K-12 public schools through five different reading levels.


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