A wealthy school district in the Chicago suburbs hosted “anti-racism” training for school leadership that told administrators that expecting people of color to teach white people is a form of “covert white supremacy.”
On Feb. 26, Naperville District 203 held an “anti-racism” training hosted by the Countywide Equity Institute and leadership coach Dena Simmons. Topics included best “equity and inclusion” practices for the district as well as “implicit bias” and “microaggressions” training.
According to a report from The Federalist, Simmons, the keynote speaker, told attendees that Americans are “spiritually murdering” black students. Simmons also reportedly told listeners that white people removing snow is indicative of systemic racism. The speaker was likely referencing a Los Angeles Times article wherein the author condemned her Republican neighbor for snow plowing her driveway days after the Capitol riot.
In an article entitled “How to Be an Antiracist Educator,” Simmons, who graduated from Yale University, praised The New York Times’ widely-criticized “1619 Project” as the gold standard for education. Simmons also said during a TEDx talk that “white supremacy” is the result of schools that refuse to teach “racial justice” and “anti-racism” to students.
A tweet from Jayne Williard, the assistant superintendent of curriculum in District 203, shows that 10 other panelists were slated to talk throughout the “anti-racism” training.
One of the panelists includes Valda Valburn who is the CEO of Valburn Consulting Group, a diversity and inclusion organization that partners with school districts to teach them how to be “anti-racist.” The organization boasts partnerships with the University of Virginia’s business school and a slew of public and private K-12 institutions across the country.
A whistleblower teacher at a District 203 high school sent The Federalist screenshots of slides obtained from Valburn’s presentation on “Leading for Equity: Efficacy and Action in Schools.”
One of the slides listed countless “socially acceptable” forms of “covert white supremacy,” one example included the campaign slogan “Make America Great Again.”
Other examples of “covert white supremacy” included “not believing experiences of [people of color],” “police murdering [people of color],” “Euro-centric Curriculum,” “Expecting [people of color] to teach white people,” “assuming that good intentions are enough,” “celebrating Columbus Day,” “the bootstrap theory,” and becoming a “self-appointed white ally.”
Valburn’s presentation also defined “racial justice.” The definition drew an eerily similar connection to the rhetoric used by so-called Democratic socialists.
“Social justice: A vision of society in which the distribution of resources and power is equitable and all members are physically and psychologically safe and secure,” the slide reads. “Social justice involves social actors who have a sense of their own agency as well as a sense of social responsibility toward and with individuals and society.”
Another slide said that pushing for “diversity” is not enough because “diversity” encompasses multiple human characteristics used to identify individuals and groups. The slide insinuates that “diversity” does not promote “racial justice” because it does not account enough for race.
The training was hosted shortly after the Illinois State Board of Education voted to pass new “culturally responsive” teaching standards that force educators to “embrace and encourage progressive viewpoints.”
According to a copy of the new standards obtained by The Daily Wire, teachers are required to “assess how their biases and perceptions affect their teaching practice and how they access tools to mitigate their own behaviors.” This includes, but is not limited to, racism, sexism, homophobia, unearned privilege, and Eurocentrism.
The legislation makes clear that teachers and leaders must also affirm the identity of gender-dysphoric students. This includes integrating and implementing “the wide spectrum and fluidity of identities” into course curriculum.
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