The College of Lake County Board of Trustees has delayed hiring an administrator to oversee diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives on campus in a bid to allay the concerns of some community members concerning the critical theory of race.
Twenty-four members of the public recently told the board they opposed the hiring, believing it would lead to a critical theory of race – the academic examination of social, cultural and legal issues related to race and racism in the United States – being taught on campus.
Critical breed theory is not taught in community college and there is no plan for its implementation, officials said. Seventeen members of the public expressed their support for the hiring of a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Administrator.
Despite the delay, the college board members defended their intention to hire the administrator.
Board chair Amanda Howland said diversity means more than just race, citing other examples such as religion, ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation and the wealth.
“You try to help people where they need help, but you don’t teach breed and you don’t teach critical breed theory. It just doesn’t have a role,” said Howland at a board meeting last month.
Board member Gerri Songer, who works for the Northwest Secondary District of Secondary School 214, said the district’s diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives have led to positive experiences . Songer, who is white, said the process included uncomfortable discussions with people of different races.
“They really opened my eyes with honest conversations about the things they had been through,” she added.
Songer requested that the discussion of hiring a DCI administrator be delayed until the next board meeting, scheduled for August 24, so officials can share more information about the job and its role on the board. campus.
“I think people might feel a little better if they had a better idea of what it would look like,” she said.
CLC President Lori Suddick said hiring a DCI administrator is part of the CLC’s strategic plan to help provide high quality equitable education to the various communities it serves.
Suddick said the administrator, if hired, would work to ensure that policies, systems and processes imbue the principles of diversity, equity and inclusion to support every student.
“As an open access higher education institution, the CLC is responsible for ensuring that it provides holistic student services, learning experiences and extracurricular options that meet the needs of a very wide range. students, ”Suddick said. “Research shows that providing these basic needs improves the chances of successful graduation.”
If the board approves the DCI administrator position at the August meeting, recruiting will begin in September, Suddick said.