Crisis in the Classroom (CiiC) is the education-focused branch of Sinclair Broadcasting Group’s newsroom. Connected to over 70 news stations across the United States, CiiC shares the biases of its parent company by typically leaning right-wing in its reporting, especially on that which features trans issues.
I talked with a friend who shared an Instagram posting with me by Robby Starbuck of a Nickelodeon video of a transgender person promoting the transgender lifestyle to children. I found this video disturbing
Staffed primarily by reporter Katrina Watrobski, the outlet has since piloted many news articles featured in local and national news outlets covering a wide spectrum of different geographic areas.
Of its aims, Crisis in the Classroom says on its website, “Crisis in the Classroom is the brand name for Sinclair Broadcast Group’s national K-12 education franchise. Airing on 73 local news stations across the country, Crisis in the Classroom is focused on covering issues most important to American parents. Our social media platforms and website act as aggregators for the content produced by our local stations and national bureau.”
In its annual investor report for 2022, Sinclair reports a revenue of $1.6 billion from advertising means primarily. There is no specific information available on the finances of Crisis in the Classroom.
The reported income of Sinclair’s CEO, Christopher S Ripley, is over $9.6 million, after adjustment for bonuses and equity.
History of Anti-LGBTQ+ Activism
Sinclair has been criticized in multiple media outlets for its conservative leanings, which may not be transparent for consumers of its local news. CiiC itself has exhibited the same bias, as seen both through the individuals it features on the site and in the way that it frames its stories.
One example is a story from Charlottesville, Virginia, the premise is that cisgender children are made uncomfortable by having to share a bathroom with transgender children. The article features prominently the voice of a parent detractor of this, but does not feature anyone in support of the school’s policy beyond a spokesperson for the school. Another is a story on a school in Glendale, California, that suspended a student for misgendering a teacher; the article features the perspectives from angry parents and no perspectives from parents who support the school’s policies. An article about a lawsuit in Chico, California about pronoun usage featured a similar slant.
Anti-trans editorials are also featured on their respective sites, including one from Dayton, Ohio being against the teaching of the existence of transgender people to young children, under the claim that it’s a part of “sexuality.”