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Oregon’s Department of Education allocated nearly $2 million for a fellowship that would train K-12 educators from diverse backgrounds to reject the “eurocentric worldview” of “individualism,” Fox News Digital has learned.
The antiracist fellowship, funded by ODE, is broken down into several arcs for “decentering.” One of them is pushing back against the “euro-centric worldview” on “individualism.”
“We are more than our titles and more than the roles we’ve been assigned; this arc will create space for each fellow to identify and unpack their multiple identities of self,” the arc stated.
Another arc focused on “unlearning;” fellows will learn to “practice understanding themselves as a grounded bridge between curriculum and their students.” This arc will also focus on “unlearn[ing] harmful practices that deny self, story, relationship, and context.”
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The total cost for the 23-month project will be $1,929,637.50. The fellowship will teach at most 600 educators how to create “racially affirming environments” in their classrooms. Affirming means that the teachers’ identities are “seen” and “honored” in classrooms, ODE told Fox News Digital.
The fellowship will “deepen educators’ understanding… of the individual, the institutional and the systemic impacts of racism on schools and communities.” Fellows will create their own project “that disrupts a racist pattern/practice/policy, or works towards liberation/equity/decolonization.”
The fellowship is funded by Oregon’s Student Success Act, which planned to invest $2 billion in K-12 education, for the purpose of “improving access and opportunities for students who have been historically underserved in the education system.”
In order to qualify, grant applicants must demonstrate an “equity lens or tool” in order to “ensure that no focal group or community is ignored in the process of community engagement and plan development.
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“What is essential now is that districts, schools, and ODE find the will to keep churning through the relentless dynamics of… sustained and systemic racism,” ODE said in its eligibility statement.
The department’s definition of an “equity lens” means a focus on “on race and ethnicity,” but also includes other groups as well. ODE stated that “Centering racial equity is rooted in the historical context of Oregon and is the path through which we can heal while targeting areas of action, intervention and investment.”
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ODE told Fox News Digital in a statement that the law “specifically directs the state to invest in programs to recruit and retain racially, ethnically, or linguistically diverse educators in Oregon.”
“In this effort, the [Educator Advancement Council] solicited proposals to design and pilot a sustainable model for a Racial Justice Institute aimed at achieving culturally and racially affirming environments across the PreK-12 school system,” the statement stated.