Society

University of Wisconsin Giving Grades Based on Race?

| by Michael Allen

The University of Wisconsin–Madison (UW) Faculty Senate recently passed a "Framework for Diversity and Inclusive Excellence," which was based on the "Inclusive Excellence" framework adopted by the school's Board of Regents on March 5, 2009.

While improving diversity and inclusiveness is common at universities these days, UW economics professor W. Lee Hansen found a small portion in the original framework that may mean the school is supposed to give grades based on race, notes the National Review.

In an op-ed for PopeCenter.org, Hansen notes that part of this original framework calls for a “proportional participation of historically underrepresented racial-ethnic groups at all levels of an institution, including high status special programs, high-demand majors, and in the distribution of grades.”

However, Hansen didn't mention the footnote that appears next to "distribution of grades,” which reads "(Bensimon, 2008)." The footnote may refer to a 2008 writing or research by educator Estela Benismon, but the context is not clear.

Hansen later wrote of his contempt for diversity: "It is impossible for me to imagine anything less consistent with the values of any educational institution than organizing a mob to protest a talk. It is also impossible for me to think that such a thing could have happened at Madison but for the obsession with diversity that has been building for years."

"The University of Wisconsin adopted its first diversity plan back in 1966 and every few years it launches a much-touted new one. During my 30-year teaching career at Madison, followed by more than a decade of retirement, I have seen not the slightest bit of evidence that the fixation on 'diversity' has made the campus better in any respect."

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Sources: National Review, USC.edu, PopeCenter.org, Wisc.edu (Image Credit: Daniel J Simanek)