Missouri School District Trains Teachers To Understand Their Place In The ‘Cycle Of Oppression’

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Reagan Reese Contributor
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A Missouri school district held a teacher training that asked teachers to learn and understand their place in the “cycle of oppression,” according to training documents made public by the City Journal.

The training, titled “Senior Leadership Series – Equity & Access” and put on by Springfield Public Schools in Springfield, Missouri, taught educators to examine their “identities and privileges” in regards to race and gender, according to public training documents. The training, focused on making sure educators are “aware” of their privilege, is part of widespread recent efforts to integrate diversity, equity and inclusion practices into the classroom. (RELATED: University Of Tennessee ‘Volunteers’ Students For Critical Race Theory)

The training was taught in 2020 by the district’s chief equity and diversity officer Yvania Garcia-Pusateri, the public training documents showed. The educators were advised of the “Vegas Rule” before starting the training: “learning leaves and the names/stories stay here.”

The training opened with a “land acknowledgement” for attendees to recognize the land they are on as the land of Native and Indigenous peoples, the training documents showed. Educators are warned that the training may trigger discomfort, but that “growth and learning are what will make you an ethical leader.”

The teachers reflected on which aspects of their identities, including race, gender, sexual orientation and socio-economic status affect how others perceive them, the training documents showed. These identities play into a “cycle of oppression” if one lacks “guilt, blame and consciousness.”

The “cycle of oppression” says different social and cultural institutions, like schools and churches, push guilt and ignorance through privilege and discrimination, the documents stated. To break this cycle, educators were told to “take a stand” and “raise consciousness.”

“Becoming aware of privilege should not be viewed as a burden or source of guilt, but rather, an opportunity to learn and be responsible so that we may work toward a more just and inclusive world,” the training documents stated.

The training included guidance on affirming LGBTQ youth, putting an emphasis on situations where biological sex and gender identity do not align, the training documents stated. The educators shared stories about students without using pronouns and watched a video on the importance of using the correct pronouns.

Springfield Public Schools and Garcia-Pusateri did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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