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TERI - and the beat goes on...

Another one of those crazy academics, an English prof at Emory, writes in the Chronicle:


Heteronormativity, White Racism, Etc. at Minnesota

By Mark Bauerlein

Last year, the University of Minnesota College of Education set about reviewing its curriculum, calling the project the Teacher Education Redesign Initiative. The College formed a set of "task groups" to address different aspects of the program, one of them being the "Race, Culture, Class, and Gender Task Group." In July, the group issued its recommendations.

The first learning outcome the group identified was this: "Our future teachers will be able to discuss their own histories and current thinking drawing on notions of white privilege, hegemonic masculinity, heteronormativity, and internalized oppression."

Another outcome is: "Future teachers will recognize & demonstrate understanding of white privilege."

Another one is: "Future teachers are able to explain how institutional racism works in schools."

And another one, this a schema of U.S. history in miniature:

"Our future teachers will be able to construct and articulate a sophisticated and nuanced critical analysis of this story of America, for what it illuminates and what it hides or distorts. In pursuing this analysis, students will make use of, among other concepts and theories, the following:

myth of meritocracy in the United States

historical connections between scientific racism, intelligence testing, and assumptions of fixed mental capacity

alternative explanations for mobility (and lack of it)

history of demands for assimilation to white, middle-class, Christian meanings and values

history of white racism, with special focus on current colorblind ideology."

You can find the document by typing into Google "Minnesota Race Culture Class Gender task group" and click on the pdf file labeled "Self."

Note that these controversial and difficult notions about race, history, and society are to be accepted and assimilated by students.
They don't allow students to defend meritocracy as a reality, not a myth. Students are not encouraged to explore "white privilege" as a supposition for which they compile evidence for and against its existence and impact in this or that community or school. These outcomes are assumptions that have the status of mandates.

There are a lot of interesting comments on the article at the Chronicle site. Whining that this is all a conservative plot by some right wing wackos is no longer going to fly. Neither Bauerline nor Soltan - of University Diaries - are exactly what you'd call right wingers...

Time to wake up in CEHD and Morrill?

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