The Utah Education Association (UEA) expresses profound concern and outrage over the recent remarks by Utah State Board of Education Member Natalie Cline, who labeled educators as “complicit in the grooming of children for sex trafficking.” These words are not only unfounded but also dangerous, and they cast an unwarranted shadow over the dedicated and professional educators in our state.
We are deeply troubled by USBE’s failure to find her toxic words in violation of its standards and its unwillingness to take action to reprimand or censure Cline.
At UEA, we firmly believe in defending the integrity and professionalism of our public educators. Teachers play a vital role in shaping the future of our society by nurturing and educating our students. Labeling them with such baseless accusations undermines their dedication and erodes the trust between educators, students, parents and the community.
“I am horrified that an elected official entrusted with overseeing education policy in our state would blatantly disregard teachers’ tireless efforts and intentionally create an environment of mistrust and hostility detrimental to the educational process,” President Renee Pinkney said.
UEA urges Cline to acknowledge the harm caused and to apologize for attacking the educators who tirelessly serve Utah’s children. Our public school educators and students deserve more than divisive rhetoric and unfounded accusations.
UEA remains steadfast in its dedication to fostering a respectful, safe, supportive public school environment. We will continue to advocate for the values of education, inclusivity and professionalism our state’s educators uphold daily.