Thought police halted at University of Minnesota — for now

by J. P. Freire
Washington Examiner
12/28/2009

Political litmus tests are regularly derided in politics, but they are still sufficiently lauded in academia that “The Race, Culture, Class and Gender Task Group” in the University of Minnesota’s teacher-education program is able to hold some clout. The professors in this task group issued a “final report” that recommended ideological screening of applicants for admission to the school’s teacher-ed program. If you’re in an ideological grey area, don’t worry — remedial re-education would be offered to help.

What sort of metric are we working with here? Well, teachers-to-be must demonstrate “cultural competence” — that is to say, they must recognize that schools are “socially constructed systems that are susceptible to racism . . . but are also critical sites for social and cultural transformation.” If you’re the sort of dunce that thinks that teaching math is about, well, teaching math, then no graduate degree for you.

Good thing the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education was able to get the university’s general counsel to promise that the university will never “mandate any particular beliefs or screen out people with ‘wrong beliefs from the University.” Of course, those promises are frequently made and broken, so keep an eye out.

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