School Board Approves ‘Anti-Racism’ Resolution Following Heated Public Debate


Laurel Duggan Social Issues and Culture Reporter
Font Size:

Salem-Keiser, Oregon’s second-largest school district, approved a resolution Tuesday night which stated the board’s commitment to equity and anti-racism following heated public debate.

The school board’s resolution committed “to routinely interrupt systems of oppression on behalf of the students and staff in Salem-Keizer Public Schools and in our community.”

The resolution passed 4-2 following public comments at the Tuesday night school board meeting. Several parents expressed concern that the anti-racism resolution was polarizing and destructive.

“Please stop calling anyone who disagrees with you a white supremacist,” one participant said, according to Statesman-Journal. (RELATED: Loudoun County Public Schools Denies Board Had Knowledge Of Alleged Sexual Assault In Girls’ Bathroom)

“I believe this resolution on the table is a historic, fundamental, foundational statement that this board can make to this entire community,” commented Benny Williams, former president of the Salem-Keizer NAACP, according to the Statesman-Journal. He said the resolution was a first step for the community.

The resolution stated that the school district needs to address the “overrepresentation of students of color in special education and the underrepresentation of students of color in talented and gifted and college-prep programs.” (RELATED: High School Student Arrested For Refusing To Wear A Mask At School)

It attributed disparate outcomes in achievement and discipline to bias in school policy and curricula. The resolution also committed to building a diverse workforce.

Concerns about racial inequity in education have driven efforts across the country to eliminate advanced classes and gifted programs, which tend to be disproportionately white and Asian.