Follow the Money
What is the American University Antiracist Center?
In 2018, the Marguerite Casey Foundation, based in Seattle, awarded a $200,000 “gift” to one of the leading academics spreading critical race theory – Ibram Kendi – for a new center at American University called the “Antiracist Research and Policy Center.” The support strategies for the grant included policy, advocacy, and “systems reform.”
That year, the Bush Foundation, based in Saint Paul, Minnesota, gave Educators for Excellence, a New York-based nonprofit with six chapters around the country, a $10,000 grant for “sponsorship” of “How to Be an Antiracist Educator: A Conversation with Dr. Ibram Kendi.” The organization promoted a “How to be an Antiracist” book club with its St. Paul, Minnesota, chapter in April 2020. Kendi had a keynote speech scheduled with the Minnesota chapter in May 2020. The website included a button, “Take the Pledge,” agreeing to a pledge to “Commit to live out antiracism for your students.”
The next year, the Ford Foundation awarded Kendi a $200,000 grant to create “the National Antibigotry Project/Convening at the Antiracist Research & Policy Center” and another $50,000 grant for the “Racial Reporting Initiative” of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center to organize and host a symposium to develop the “Racial Reporting Guidebook.”
Later, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation gave a nonprofit, Community Music Works, in Providence, Rhode Island, a $150,000 grant to support the “documentation and dissemination” of “model for antiracist praxis in classical music education.”
What K-12 work has the American University Antiracist Center done?
On Aug. 19, 2020, the American University Antiracist Center hosted an online webinar, “Empowering Educators: A Convening on Racial Equity in Education.” The event was cosponsored by Pizza Hut and First Book.
Jason Reynolds, coauthor of a book, “Stamped,” about antiracism with author Ibram X. Kendi, was the keynote speaker. The webinar recommended the work of consultant Bettina Love, cofounder of the Abolitionist Teaching Network and the founder of Love Educational Services LLC.