Check Your Level Of White Privilege In High School Sociology Class

A sociology teacher in a wealthy suburb of Chicago required her students to complete a white privilege self-assessment, according to pictures of the survey posted by parents.


Lake Forest High School students who are enrolled in a sociology class with Ms. Cindy Collier were given an assignment titled, “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Backpack.” The “white privilege test” was adapted from “research on white privilege” by anti-racist activist Peggy Mcintosh. Students were instructed to answer “yes or no” to 25 statements.


Statements of white privilege include, “If a traffic cop pulls me over, I can be sure I haven’t been singled out because of my race,” “I can be sure that if I need legal or medical help, my race will not work against me” and “I am sure I will be given curricular materials that testify to the existence of my race.”


The students’ objective was to “create a list of three examples of privilege based on the category assigned to your table: hetero privilege, male privilege, wealth privilege, Christian privilege, able-body privilege, English language privilege.”


Collier, who is a history and social studies teacher in Lake Forest School District, issued the assessment to students who live in a very wealthy suburb of Chicago. The median household income in Lake Forest is over $172,000, according to Data USA.


Henry Dolan, an alumnus of Lake Forest High School, said that he was Collier’s student during his junior year of African-American studies. He believes that the “White Privilege” assessment is steeped in critical race theory, an ideology that analyzes everything through the lens of race.


“If I had this assignment, I wouldn’t complete it,” Dolan said.

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