Penn High School’s Social-Emotional Learning Curriculum Includes Lesson On Microagressions


On June 18, 2021, REAL News Michiana published an article titled Penn High School’s Critical Race Theory Curriculum, Lesson 1: Microaggressions. REAL News Michiana filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) on Penn High School which uncovered a Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) Curriculum and a lesson/slideshow on microaggressions. The microaggression slides are included in a section called, “Conflict Resolution: Dealing with and Eliminating Microaggressions.”

Merriam Webster defines a microaggression as: a comment or action that subtly and often unconsciously or unintentionally expresses a prejudiced attitude toward a member of a marginalized group (such as a racial minority). 

The following are a few REAL News Michiana summaries of the lessons:

Theme: Environmental microaggressions. Macro-level microaggressions, which are more apparent on systemic and environmental levels.


  • A college or university with buildings that are all names after white heterosexual upper class males.
  • Television shows and movies that feature predominantly white people, without representation of people of color.
  • Overcrowding of public schools in communities of color.
  • Overabundance of liquor stores in communities of color.


  • You don’t belong/You won’t succeed here. There is only so far you can go.
  • You are an outsider/You don’t exist.
  • People of color don’t/shouldn’t value education.
  • People of color are deviant.

Theme: Myth of meritocracy. Statements which assert that race does not play a role in life success.


  • “I believe the most qualified person should get the job.”
  • “Everyone can succeed in this society, if they work hard enough.”


  • People of color are given extra unfair benefits because of their race.
  • People of color are lazy and/or incompetent and need to work harder.