A New York City school apparently posted a “White Privilege Exercise” — essentially a survey of questions intended to determine the level of the poll takers’ white privilege — in a hallway outside the principal’s office in view of all students, but no one knows why since there are very, very few white students at the school.
“What could even be the purpose of this in a school that has so few white students? Is it to inflame tensions and single out?,” City Councilman Joseph Borelli (R-Staten Island) said after receiving photos of the poll from a city worker.
“Given the school’s abominable test and college readiness scores, perhaps the chancellor should be concerned that they are not teaching enough math and English,” he added.
[Life Sciences Secondary] has 520 high school students who are 3 percent white and a 54-student middle school that’s just 2 percent white. Only 24 percent of the middle schoolers met state standards on English tests, while the results in math were even more dismal, with just 13 percent meeting state standards.
In the high school, a mere 16 percent of students were able to pass college prep or career prep courses and exams, and 36 percent graduated “college ready” for the CUNY system.
The posted poll, located on a public bulletin board near the main offices, surely would have been noticed by faculty, staff, and administrators. The poll itself was from a 1990 magazine article and contained questions such as:
“If a police officer pulls me over, I can be sure I haven’t been singled out because of my race” that get scored based on whether they’re “often,” “sometimes” or “seldom” true.
It’s hard to imagine what lesson teachers at the school were hoping to impart on their mostly non-white students except to prepare them to have preconceived notions about white people when they meet them, something that would seem to run, by definition, counter to the idea of diversity training.
However, a 2016 New York Post article revealed that the same poll was being used by the Department of Education (DOE) “during mandatory racial sensitivity training for school staffers.”
“Sensitivity training” is a strange way to say “teaching children to be suspicious of other races as a matter of curriculum.”
And it’s not their only initiative. The DOE’s “implicit bias” training for all New York schools have white teachers bringing lawsuits for racial discrimination describing the environment as teaching children that whiteness is “toxic.”
The East 96th Street school may be given a bit of a pass on this one since the DOE considered this kind of divide-and-conquer propaganda a scholastic tool to prepare kids to go to college or find gainful employment.
But in the case of this particular school, as mentioned above, it doesn’t seem to have done its job.