New York school faces backlash over racially segregated ‘celebration’

Although segregation in America’s public schools ended decades ago, some critics say progressives are attempting to bring it back in the name of racial justice.

According to one recent report, a junior high school in New York City has unveiled a racially segregated exercise apparently influenced by the controversial tenets of critical race theory.

“Why are we even talking about racial identity?”

As the New York Post explained, Lower Manhattan Community School Principal Shanna Douglas advised parents about the plan in a recent letter.

“On November 23rd and 24th, 7th and 8th graders will explore the question ‘How do our racial identities influence our experiences?'” she wrote. “An affinity group is a group formed around a shared interest.”

Students were asked to choose one of five categories — white, Asian, multi-racial, African-American, and Hispanic — with which to attend the exercise. A final category was included for those students who were uncomfortable with the program.

The five race-based groups were gathered to discuss the aforementioned question while the final group would consider a different prompt: “Why are we even talking about racial identity?”

As for the school’s demographics, reports indicate it is 44% Asian, 29% white, 15% Hispanic, and 8% Black.

“Anyone can opt-out of this two-day celebration”

Douglas explained the purpose of the exercise as part of the school’s mission to “undo the legacy of racism and oppression in this country that impacts our school community.”

She went on to write that administrators are focusing on the issue because “students are talking about it since race has become a popular topic on social media, or parents are talking even more about it at home due to the recent incidents across the nation.”

A spokesperson for the state’s Department of Education confirmed that the “program was developed in close coordination with both the School Leadership Team, PTA, and families,” adding that it has been made “abundantly clear to both students and parents that anyone can op-out of this two-day celebration if they desire.”

As might be expected, the news has evoked mixed responses from parents in the district.

One upset father called it “insidious,” adding: “Teach the history. Tell that story. I’m all for an honest accounting. But this is something different.”

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