Minneapolis Public Schools’ Gay Straight Alliance curriculum features lessons on ‘white privilege’ and how ‘masculine and feminine are just social constructions’


Minneapolis Public Schools’ Out4Good LGBT program curriculum for the district’s Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) clubs features lessons on “white privilege,” challenging “colorblindness,” and that “masculine and feminine are just social constructions.”

The lesson “Exploring White Privilege Circle,” which is geared towards middle and high school students, asks a series of discussion questions such as what is “white privilege” and how do students “see White Privilege in the world” around them. The participants, set up in a small circle, are to share answers to the questions posed by the group leader. As part of the lesson, students are to watch the video “Cracking the Codes: Unconscious Bias” that focuses on TK. One of the concluding questions asks club members “In what ways are straight cisgender privilege and white privilege the same. [sic] How are they different?”

A lesson for grades 6-12 titled “Construction of Masculinity and Femininity” states that these “two concepts play a large role in how people perform their genders” and “what certain people should and should not do or feel.” The activity “will break down those gender norms and help students come to the conclusion that masculine and feminine are just social constructions and not rules that need to be followed.” As part of the activities associated with the lesson, students are to list “stereotypical traits” associated with masculine and feminine. The facilitator is to also draw attention to the idea that “to express these traits are traits that society has assigned to these two sections.”

Another curriculum lesson titled “What Difference Does Race Make? Circle” focuses on exploring “the meaning of race among those in the GSA.” The lesson for grades 6-12 includes watching the video “Decoded: Why Color Blindness Will Not End Racism.” After watching the video, students are to share answers in a group setting to questions such as “How much do you have to think about the differences that race makes in your daily life” and “How do you cope with the realities that race creates for you or for others you care about?”