This story was ran on KATU Channel 2 – author is Kellee Azar
ALOHA, Ore. — Some parents in Aloha are concerned about a “white privilege” survey their children received as homework.
Jason Schmidt’s son, a senior at Aloha High School, was given the survey as homework. Schmidt said he’s not too happy about the form.
“I think he should be learning actual education and not be a part of some social experiment or some teacher’s political agenda,” Schmidt said.
Sociologist Randy Blazak disagrees, saying education is supposed to be provocative.
“I mean the way we get people to challenge assumptions about the world is to provoke them,” Blazak explained. “It’s a great way to open up this conversation. It’s not too soon to discuss this issue.”
Other parents agree with Blazak, like Sarah Rios-Lopez who says racial discussions are important.
“I want [my daughter] to have opinions. Whether it’s for or against, you have to create those, but you can’t without good information so I applaud teachers getting out that information,” Rios-Lopez said.
Rios-Lopez is an American but she says she’s often judged because of the color of her skin. She said seniors heading out into the world should be aware of the realities of race in America.
“We are first of all judged by the color of our skin, because that is what you see first,” Rios-Lopez said. “It’s a huge topic and it needs to start somewhere. If it doesn’t start now, its not going to start.”
But Schmidt sees it differently.
“With the amount of money we pay for schools, they should be educating not indoctrinating our students about the latest political fad or political agenda a teacher wants to get across,” Schmidt said.
According to the Beaverton School District, this class deals with a number of topics affecting our country today including race, sexuality and religion. The hope is to get students talking civilly with one another about challenging topics.