Culture, Politics

School Districts Deploy Commissars to Public Schools

Much ink has been spilled over the illiberal education that college students receive these days, and how ivory tower-incubated ideas are now finding their ways into society at large. But less well-known is how some of the more devious – and unconstitutional – policies employed by America’s colleges and universities have begun to migrate down to the K-12 level as well.

One such program is the bias response team, which encourages students and staff to file reports about perceived “bias incidents” through portals on the school’s website – anonymously if individuals so choose. Reports are sent to a school’s “team,” which is often composed of assorted university officials such as campus police, deans of students, Title IX administrators, and diversity employees. A 2017 report from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education identified 231 bias response teams operating in higher education institutions across the country, a number which has undoubtedly risen since then.

As Jeffrey Aaron Snyder and Amna Khalid wrote in the New Republic in 2016, “They degrade education by encouraging silence instead of dialogue, the fragmentation of campuses into groups of like-minded people, and the deliberate avoidance of many of the most important—and controversial—topics across all academic disciplines.”

It should surprise nobody that these programs have become weaponized in recent years. Students frequently reported for discussing political and religious topics – which are constitutionally protected on public university campuses, much to the chagrin of these bureaucratic star chambers. Once made aware of these programs’ existence, most rational students simply refrain from discussing potentially controversial topics altogether out of an abundance of caution; as a result, whole lines of discussion and arguments that might be found on a nightly news show quietly and conveniently disappear from college campuses. Read more…

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