A public school district in Oklahoma paid $22,750 for "equity experts" to teach on subjects about systemic inequality, "unconscious bias," and intersectionality ahead of a projected $6 million budget cut, according to documents obtained by Parents Defending Education.
Norman Public Schools District, which includes 25 schools, paid three different groups for virtual training sessions in the 2020-21 school year.
Factuality, LLC was paid $3,000 for a "facilitated dialogue, crash course, and interactive experience, that simulates structural inequality in America."
The training included one 90-minute session for 100 people held on Oct. 20, 2020.
Factualilty's training includes a board game where participants start by adopting a character whose identity doesn’t match their own. As they move around the board, they encounter fact-based advantages and limitations based on their characters’ identity. The company describes it as a facilitated dialogue, crash course, and board game, all in one, that simulates real-life experiences in America.
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) was paid $10,000 for its "A WORLD OF DIFFERENCE Institute Training Program."
The ADL program is designed to "recognize bias and the harm it inflicts on individuals and society" and "improve intergroup relations."
A slideshow posted by ADL lists topics such as "Pyramid of Hate" and "Acts of Bias." The topics are termed "jokes, rumors, stereotyping, non-inclusive language and insensitive remarks" that can lead to "genocide."
She Geeks Out, LLC was paid $9,750 for an online training class called "Foundations of DEI & Unconscious Bias in the Workplace." The group also provided 65 annual licenses for a training program called "Unconscious Bias in the Workplace," which cost $4,250.
The She Geeks Out website states its goal is to abolish inequity in the workplace by providing "tech and tech-adjacent women and other marginalized genders and their allies an opportunity to network and connect with each other as well as with companies who wish to hire them."
"Once you've completed the course, you'll be able to grasp complex topics such as intersectionality, inclusion, and equity, start to notice specific types of bias that can show up at work and beyond, and learn key strategies for mitigating bias," the website says.
It is not clear whether the sessions were attended by students, faculty, or other school staff. The programs stem from Critical Race Theory or CRT. According to the Critical Race Training in Education website, CRT is termed "academic movement which seeks to link racism, race, and power."
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