Dark Money in Public Education
Jordan Henry has documented connections to well-funded far-right anti-government organizations that seek to challenge the legitimacy of free public education in the United States. Henry's use of constant Public Records Act requests and talking points at Board meetings and on social media are part of publicly available information from these organizations.
Parents Defending Education
Jordan Henry has connections to Parents Defending Education, a group that opposes public education.
PDE focuses on finding people to send Public Records Act requests (PRAs) to local school districts, a tactic long used by Henry and his followers. PDE is behind multiple lawsuits against the US Department of Education and has extensive ties to right wing legal activist and former Federalist Society President, Leonard Leo.
According to Media Matters, "The group’s president, Nicki Neily, has appeared on Fox News as part of the network’s dishonest coverage of efforts by school board officials and the FBI to respond to threats and harassment. But Neily is not just a parent defending education, as she has a long history of managing right-wing organizations funded by the Koch brothers and Bradley Foundation networks."
The Heritage Foundation
Massive conservative think tank The Heritage Foundation created Save Our Schools, "a one-stop shop of resources for parents interested in engaging with their children's school system." Save Our Schools provides resources and training to oppose CRT, LGBTQ curriculum, public health measures and other tent poles of right wing anti-school efforts. The Heritage Foundation also publishes resources and social media tools to "fight CRT" and inclusivity in schools more broadly. According to their 2021 tax filing the Heritage Foundation has net assets over $367 million.
Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF)
Well-known for its decades long anti-abortion activism, the ADF is a "legal alliance of Christian attorneys." Considered an extremist group by the SPLC and with annual revenue north of $65 million, the organization is now heavily focused on anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-public school lawsuits and activism. They publish a detailed toolkit for parents and recommend strategies employed by Jordan Henry and his supporters.
PragerU is a right wing media and education organization. Jill Simonian is an ally/supporter of Jordan Henry and is the Director of Outreach for PragerU Resources for Educators and Parents and PragerU Kids. The organization advocates for homeschooling and aims to replace public education with "Judeo-Christian values."
Jordan Henry has co-hosted and promoted events by Protection of the Educational Rights of Kids (P.E.R.K) an organization founded during the Covid-19 pandemic to bring legal action against pandemic protections. They claim affiliations with anti-vaccine activist groups and host trainings and provide resources and legal support to challenge schools and legislation.
At a 6/27 event they host Jordan Henry, Inland Empire Assembly candidate Patrick Lee Gipson and homeschool advocate Narine Tadevosyan to speak as "community leaders."
The Discovery Institute
Famous for introducing the "teach the controversy" angle to force schools to teach "intelligent design" (a.k.a. creationism), The Discovery Institute is a well-funded right-wing think tank which uses buzzwords like "parental rights" and "education reform" to launder fellow Chris Rufo's mission to ban Critical Race Theory and LGBTQ+ inclusive schools broadly.
Rufo is linked to numerous dark money funded orgs. With support from The Discovery Institute, he founded a legal coalition with David Pivtorak amongst others with the goal to "effectively abolish critical race theory programs from American life." Pivtorak is currently representing Jordan Henry's ally, vocal anti-trans advocate and former GUSD teacher, Ray Shelton.
Foundation Against Intolerance and Racism
Jordan Henry introduced himself to one community member as a representative of FAIR and later shared video materials by the org at a 2021 school board meeting.
Despite the name, FAIR, was founded by a group of right-leaning individuals to replace anti-racist curriculum with their own materials. With funding from Nazi memorabilia collector Harlan Crow, as well as support from Fox News host Megyn Kelley and anti-public school activist Chris Rufo, the organization has recently devolved amidst infighting.