Teachers union trains ‘racial equity advocates’ to push ‘anti-racism’ in schools

A Minnesota teachers union is training educators on how to "expand their anti-racism mindset."

The Education Minnesota headquarters in St. Paul. (Education Minnesota/YouTube)

A program overseen by a Minnesota teachers union runs a “cohort” of members advocating for “racial equity” in schools.

Racial Equity Advocates (REA) is a program of the Minnesota Educator Academy’s Facing Inequities and Racism in Education (FIRE) project, which itself is a program of the Education Minnesota teachers union.

“The FIRE program includes the Racial Equity Advocate cohort program and a series of professional development modules for educators to grow an anti-racism mindset and opportunities to engage with Education Minnesota’s members to interrupt and dismantle institutional racism,” a website for the program explains.

The REA cohort program was created for teachers “passionate about racial and social justice in education.” Various tweets from the FIRE program show teachers engaged in “cultural competency training” and “interrupting whiteness training.”

“The Minnesota Educator Academy’s member-driven program for Facing Inequities and Racism in Education aims to disrupt systemic racism and racial inequities in Minnesota’s education system,” reads the program page, which is filed under “professional development” on the Education Minnesota website.

REA is looking for a new group of members for the 2022-23 school year. The program page seeks applicants who “understand that education — and unionism — is built on systems of white supremacy” and are “comfortable with difficult discussions.”

“The REA cohort is an ongoing program that works to create a network of educators dedicated to helping members grow in their own racial equity journeys and to expand their anti-racism mindset,” the program page reads. “By joining the cohort, REAs will be empowered to work as members of the union to activate change at the building level and beyond.”


Evan Stambaugh

Evan Stambaugh is a freelance writer who had previously been a sports blogger. He has a BA in theology and an MA in philosophy.