WINNETKA, Ill. – An affluent Chicago area school is dumping its mandatory “white privilege” day for students after hundreds of parents flooded a school board meeting to denounce the “political indoctrination.”
New Trier High School assistant superintendent Tim Hayes put the kibosh on a second mandatory “All-School Seminar Day” at an April school board meeting after more than 800 parents showed up to a meeting in February to complain about this year’s event, the North Cook News reports.
The parent complaints about the seminar’s wildly liberal slant and unbalanced focus on white privilege theory can on the same day more than 950 students skipped the event, which featured seminars like “Whose Civil Rights? Transpeople of Color Navigating the U.S.,” “Western Bias in Science,” “Blackenomics 101,” “21st Century Voter Supression” (sic), and others.
For Blackenomics 101, for example, “Rapper, entertainer, and activist, John the Author explore(d) systemic racism in relation to building a black business and artist presence in minority communities,” according to the event’s agenda.
John the Author’s musical prowess includes the inspirational lyrics:
That’s when I look to the Lord
And when he tells me to kill
That’s when I reach for my sword
Die motherfu*ker die
Betsy Hart, spokeswoman for the group Parents of New Trier that was formed to oppose the white privilege lessons, described the decision not to hold the event next year as “a wise move.”
“What happened this year was so divisive – best to not repeat it,” she told North Cook News.
Instead, Hayes said officials plan to hold a homeroom activity for students on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
“It is wise to do a focus on Martin Luther King on MLK Day (during extended advisories) which is what is being considered,” Hart said.
Yet despite the enormous backlash, school officials still insist the day-long focus on how white people supposedly suppress minorities was a great success.
Hayes told the news site that only 5 percent of students who attended the 2017 All-School Seminar Day disagreed with the viewpoints presented, though all of the students who disagreed didn’t show up for the event or fill out the survey.
Earlier this month, North Cook News reported findings from a Freedom of Information Act request to the district that shows New Trier High School has spent at least $108,583 on white privilege conferences for school employees and consulting fees with the Massachusetts-based Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity since August 2011.
The news site also uncovered nearly $90,000 in payments to the Pacific Educational Group between Jan. 2011 and last summer for “professional development” that included “diversity training” for dozens of teachers.
PEG is a San Francisco-based education consulting group led by Glenn Singleton that focuses relentlessly on white privilege “in order to uncover personal and institutional biases that prevent all students, and especially students of color, from reaching their fullest potential.”
EAGnews highlighted PEG’s work in hundreds of school districts across the nation, often through lucrative six-figure contracts with cash-strapped inner city school districts. A small sampling of districts that contracted with PEG in the 2014-15 school year revealed 11 school districts paid PEG a total of $1.56 million, including seven with six-figure contracts: Lawrence, Kansas; Osseo, Minnesota; Bellevue, Washington; Pittsburgh; Baltimore County, Maryland; Corvallis, Oregon; and St. Paul, Minnesota.
PEG listed a total of 183 client school districts across the nation on its website until media attention generated by EAGnews convinced PEG to remove the list.