The University of Memphis has scrapped plans for a social-justice program that would have paid some professors $3,000 to add critical race theory principles to their curricula, according to a new report.
Tennessee Governor Bill Lee told the Washington Free Beacon that he contacted the public university after reading reports about the program, which would have encouraged the addition of “diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice” teachings to curricula at the school by offering 15 to 20 faculty members $3,000 each beginning in the spring of 2022 and ending one year later, according to an email from university officials.
“The University of Memphis informed my office that the initiative will not move forward. We welcome robust debate on college campuses, but taxpayer dollars should never be used to fuel a divisive, radical agenda,” Lee said. “Ending this program was the right decision, and I thank the university for hearing our concerns.”
Senator Marsha Blackburn (R., Tenn.) echoed this sentiment, saying, “Taxpayer dollars should not be used to fund a woke social justice agenda.”
The Daily Caller noted that information about the program, “Infusing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice into existing Courses/Curriculum,” can still be found on the university’s website.
The program was created under the university’s “Eradicating Systemic Racism and Promoting Social Justice Initiative.”
Meanwhile, a new database of more than 500 institutions revealed that at least 236 colleges or universities have some form of mandatory student training or coursework on ideas related to critical race theory. One hundred and forty-nine schools have some form of mandatory faculty or staff training, according to CriticalRace.org.
The database, created by Cornell University law professor William A. Jacobson, found that the programs focus on concepts including “anti-racism,” “equity,” “implicit bias,” and critical race theory.