"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." - Thomas Jefferson 1820

"There is a growing technology of testing that permits us now to do in nanoseconds things that we shouldn't be doing at all." - Dr. Gerald Bracey author of Rotten Apples in Education

Search This Blog

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Northwestern's View of Diversity

While the K-12 world is bent on commonality and treating everyone the same regardless of origin or ability, the world of higher education intends to take those same kids, who have been bathed in a culture of oneness and sameness, and yank them in completely the opposite direction. The goal of the  Common Core standards is to prepare kids for college, but what is college going to do to them? Consider Northwestern University which is implementing a "Social Inequalities and Diversities” requirement, that all students will have to complete before they graduate. We have, as a society, just bent over backwards adopting Common Core and will spend billions of dollars ($16 billion according to Pioneer Institute) treating everyone exactly the same, teaching them to reach the same ends with the same values and making sure they have absorbed that sameness through uniform standardized testing. But once they get to college they will be told they won't be able be graduate unless they understand the world is full of differences and they should embrace those differences.

According to College Fix, NU's goal " is multifaceted. The draft proposal states that once completed, students will be able to 'expand their ability to think critically', 'recognize their own positionality in systems of inequality,' and 'engage in self-reflection on power and privilege.

Wow. Someone paid a lot of money for a degree that allows them to create new words with little connection to the common lexicon. This is not an exploratory class where students investigate and decide on their own if there is inequality. The first goal begins with the premise that we have a system of  inequality. There is no movement up or down in our system. You are locked in. Tell that to people like Thomas Sowell, Nikki Haley, and Ursula Burns.

The graduation requirement being considered also contains an co-curriculum element. The one being considered by NU is “Sustained Dialogue.” The article says it is "an extracurricular program used at a number of institutions around the country designed to educate students about race, gender, and class issues." However, The International Institute for Sustained Dialogue says it is "designed for use with groups that must deal with deeply divisive relational animosities before they can find enough common ground to work together in resolving problems that affect their interests."

I checked the Daily Northwestern for reports of the deeply divisive issues plaguing the campus. Strangely, I could not find any such reports. This lack of conflict is even stranger given how committed to diversity the university is, diversity that has the potential to spark "relational animosities." They have hired three additional diversity administrators to manage this new requirement bringing the total number of administrators focused on diversity at the university to seven. Is it going too far to conclude then that the true purpose of such a program lies in the third goal, "engaging in self-reflection on power and privilege?" Translation: White Guilt.

I must now conclude that my decision to no longer contribute to my alma mater is the right decision. This is not the self empowering institution I attended that instilled in me a love of learning and the belief that my future was up to me. Rather than teach students that they can go as far and achieve as much as they are willing to work for, they will be taught that they did not earn the place they start from and any improvement they make may simply be because of "systemic privilege."

1 comment:

  1. All men level. None greater than any other.
    The Leveler Papers


Keep it clean and constructive. We reserve the right to delete comments that are profane, off topic, or spam.

Site Meter