Math is now not only racist, but perpetuating “curricular violence” according to the Jefferson County Public School (JCPS) district in Louisville, Kentucky.
To combat the alleged “curricular violence” that comes from math, the county “will host a year-long professional training program on anti-racist mathematics,” The College Fix reported.
From the outlet:
The program’s goal is to “eliminate curricular violence and innovate mathematics education” through “anti-bias, anti-racist, and racially equitable practices.”
Educators will engage in monthly sessions with Lateefah Id-Deen, assistant professor of mathematics education at Kennesaw State University, which focus on topics like white supremacy in mathematics, racial trauma in mathematics, and creating anti-racist lesson plans.
Id-Deen teaches mathematics methods courses in the Kennesaw State University Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education, emphasizing racial equity and culturally relevant pedagogy. She is also a frequent speaker at educator conferences and for the local school district.
JCPS will offer the “Anti-Racist Mathematics Pedagogy & Practices” program starting in August. It will end in May 2022. Each month, participants will spend two hours being told how they can eliminate racism in math, and will also “receive individual coaching and feedback,” the Fix reported.
Teachers accepted into the program will be required to teach four anti-racism math sessions during their Spring 2022 semester and are told they should “plan for wider dissemination of their learning within their schools and the district.”
Another year-long program hosted by the school district aims to inject so-called anti-racism lessons into other topics, such as history. Part of the program introduces teachers to various takes on U.S. history, including a book titled “A Queer History of the United States” and another called “A Disability History of the United States.”
As The Daily Wire has previously reported, the idea that “math is racist” is hardly new. Earlier this year, the Oregon Department of Education promoted a program for teachers that sought to “disman[tle] racism in mathematics,” alleging that focusing on finding the right answer is a symbol of white supremacy.
Fox News reported that the ODE sent out a newsletter in mid-February that mentioned a “Pathway to Math Equity Micro-Course” that occurred on February 21. The course, according to Fox, was designed for middle school teachers to make use of a toolkit for ‘dismantling racism in mathematics.’”
The newsletter encouraged teachers to sign up for the training, which the New York Post previously reported as including a section with 14 things associated with “White Supremacy Culture,” including perfectionism, objectivity, and individualism.
Objectivity is described in the workbook accompanying the training as “the belief that there is such a thing as being objective or ‘neutral.’” The program’s toolkit also encourages teachers not to focus on a single correct answer, but to “come up with at least two answers that might solve this problem” and to “Challenge standardized test questions by getting the ‘right’ answer, but justify other answers by unpacking the assumptions that are made in the problem.”
The toolkit also asked instructors to “center ethnomathematics” in multiple ways, one of which is to “identify and challenge the ways that math is used to uphold capitalist, imperialist, and racist views.”
In March, the California Math Research Institute announced it was hosting a “Mathematics and Racial Justice” workshop.