A Jackson Public Schools equity audit states that “most schools in the U.S. are designed in a way that gives White, middle-class students greater access and opportunity.” The audit, performed by Ajusted Equity Solutions,” also claims that “U.S. schools only reflect White histories/knowledges/cultures, yet claim that it is simply ‘American.’ This approach hides or invisiblizes White privilege, and thereby default allows White students to be more successful.”
The district paid the Minnesota based firm $41,692 per year over three years to perform the audit. The contract also reveals “Optional Research and Consulting Services” such as $8,000 per school for “Focus Groups,” “Leadership or Teacher trainings” for $6,000 per day, or a “Guided Book Conversation via Skype” for $1,500 per session (which requires the purchase of CEO Dr. Khalifa’s book).
Findings in the equity audit include the acknowledgement that “there are low perceptions that discriminatory behaviors and practices exist.” However, the document states that these findings can be “read another way” because ” stakeholders are not aware of discrimination that we know is there (from district data and other aspects of this report).” Based on the evaluation, the author(s) surmised that “minoritized families experience more discrimination in the district, than traditional White families.”
The consultant also notes that minority students “feel marginalized within the district where White culture is celebrated as the norm and reinforced with an overall colorblind approach by many teachers in the classroom.”