17The ‘Land Acknowledgement’ slide of the presentation
All San Diego teachers are being required to attend a “white privilege” training in which they are told, “you are racist” and must commit to becoming “anti-racist” in the classroom, according to a report.
The San Diego Unified School District begins the sessions with instructors telling the faculty members that they will experience “guilt, anger, apathy [and] closed-mindedness” because of their “white fragility,” according to leaked documents obtained by journalist Christopher F. Rufo.
During the training, the teachers are taught about “land acknowledgment” and asked to accept that the US was established on stolen Native American land, the report said.
They also learn about the teachings of “White Fragility” author Robin DiAngelo and “Be Antiracist: A Journal for Awareness, Reflection and Action” author Ibram X. Kend.
After watching clips of the two authors, the trainers tell the group that “you are racist” and “upholding racist ideas, structures, and policies.”
The group is challenged to become “anti-racist” in the classroom as well as “confront and examine [their] white privilege” and “teach others to see their privilege,” according to the report.
The school district didn’t immediately respond to request for comment.
The training sessions come after the district vowed to become “anti-racist” amid nationwide protests against racial injustice, which began in the wake of the cop-involved killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor.
Earlier this year, the district underwent a major overhaul to its grading system as a part of a larger effort to combat racial discrimination, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.
Data had revealed that there were significant disparities between the percentage of white and minority students who received D or F grades in the first semester of the last school year.
While white students made up 7 percent of all D or F grades, black students accounted for about 20 percent and Hispanic students received about 23 percent of them, the paper reported.
In an effort to prevent discrimination, the school board voted to eliminate non-academic factors like late work and classroom behavior in a student’s grade.
“This is part of our honest reckoning as a school district,” said Richard Barrera, who is the district’s vice president, NBC San Diego reported.
“If we’re actually going to be an anti-racist school district, we have to confront practices like this that have gone on for years and years.”
The school board also vowed to increase diversity among faculty, require school police to undergo de-escalation training and require training to eliminate bias in the hiring process, the Union-Tribune reported.