Eanes Schools pays DEI consultant Mark Gooden $170,500 to lead ‘Equity Team’ effort that brings critical race theory to the school system


In 2020, the Eanes Independent School District hired Mark Gooden to serve as the diversity, equity and inclusion consultant. 

“The racial reflection is a really impactful way to start [becoming aware of our unconscious bias],” Gooden said. “I usually coach people in doing this. I give people a space to reach back and dig into their memories and point out some things that have happened in their lives around race. What’s your earliest racial incident or racial situation? What role did you play? How did you feel? What did you do? And then from there, that’s an initial foray. That’s not the full racial autobiography. We take that and we expand it into a deeper, longer essay, if you will.”

During a February meeting, in response to a question about curriculum, Gooden indicated that no diversity, equity and inclusion “curriculum” had been selected. He did point the public to Learning for Justice, formerly Teaching Tolerance, a project of the Southern Poverty Law Center as a resource to consult.

According to results from a public records request filed by Parents Defending Education, the Eanes Independent School District spent $170,500 for the one-year contract with Gooden.

Some have raised concerns about the resources listed on the district website. One example, “100 Race Conscious Things You Can Say to Your Child to Advance Racial Justice,” recommends telling a young child: “Playing with our penises or vaginas is really fun, where do you think is the best place to do it?” Another resource recommended for students in K-5 is “10 Books To Nurture Budding Young Activists.”


Diversity consultant shares progress made in the Eanes ISD to address racial awareness KXAN News, February 25, 2021