The Elon University School of Education invited “white identifying” students to participate in a white caucus to discuss race without distressing people of color, according to an email first reported by Young America’s Foundation.
The document said it was urgent for white-identifying students to attend the white caucus, scheduled to meet online Feb. 16, because it takes a step towards making equity-minded leaders in education. The email also adds that white caucusing shows commitment to antiracism, and is important for whites who care about racial justice, according to the document obtained by Young America’s Foundation.
NEW: Elon University is hosting a whites-only caucus for “white-identifying students” to discuss racism without “re-traumatizing people of color.”
The school also forces students participating to sign a confidentiality agreement.
— Kara Zupkus (@kara_kirsten) February 9, 2021
Elon University’s graduate coordinator in the School of Education, Jennifer Strange, confirmed with the Daily Caller News Foundation that the email was real, and that she had forwarded it on the behalf of a student group promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.
“[A] group of white students will gather together weekly via Zoom to discuss a range of topics, including how to build an effective white caucus, how institutional racism is maintained and how it can be disrupted, and why antiracist education is beneficial for all students. There will be opportunities to talk about guilt, fragility, and accountability,” an advertisement on Elon University’s website stated.
“I think at Elon we are working to strive for inclusive excellence,” said Annabel Bunton, a program coordinator at the Center for Equity and Inclusive Excellence at Elon University.