Educators at a public high school in Illinois were astonished to learn when they showed up for work one day that everything from the color of their skin to snow shoveling indicates “systemic racism.”
On Feb. 26, Naperville 203 Community Unit School District hosted a systemic racism training for faculty and staff, bringing in “antiracist” coach Dena Simmons for a keynote speech. The Countywide Equity Institute featured 10 speakers lecturing on “equity and inclusion” practices for “marginalized and/or underrepresented” students, as well as implicit bias and microaggressions.
A whistleblower who reached out to The Federalist, a teacher at Naperville Central High School, claims Simmons told attendees that “our education is based on a foundation of whiteness” and that Americans “are spiritually murdering” students. Simmons also reportedly said that if you are not an “antiracist” you are a racist, even if you believe “you are treating people with respect.”
Simmons has delivered two TEDx talks on institutional racism. In one speech to educators that has more than 230,000 views on YouTube, the Yale University graduate said “white supremacy” is the outcome in all schools that do not embrace “racial justice” and “antiracism” training for students.
In an article titled “How to Be an Antiracist Educator” published in Oct. 2019, Simmons praises The New York Times’ “1619 Project” as a “comprehensive opportunity to learn and discuss history and race with colleagues and students.” The 1619 Project claimed America is systemically racist and that all of modern society and injustices are directly linked to slavery. It has been the target of much criticism by scholars for inaccuracy.
The whistleblower said Simmons’ lecture was “all over the place” and “hard to follow” content-wise. Simmons reportedly said “snow removal” indicates systemic racism, presumably referencing a viral Feb. 3 column published by the Los Angeles Times in which the author condemned her Republican neighbor for plowing her driveway.