The Postsecondary Value Commission, a partnership between the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) has worked to define the ‘value of post-secondary education’ as it relates to return on investment, economic outcomes, and degree completion. But unfortunately, these three issues aren’t the true core of this commission’s work. It’s a deceiving front for a radical proposal to permanently infuse racial and economic equity in higher education which is explained quite clearly in the commission’s definition of value: “Students experience postsecondary value when provided equitable access and support to complete quality, affordable credentials that offer economic mobility and prepare them to advance racial and economic justice in our society.”
The commission also states:
“Without explicit attention to racial, socioeconomic, and gender equity, postsecondary education will continue to sustain and exacerbate inequalities, but a more equitable postsecondary education system can build a more just society, and “The centuries of deep-rooted racism in local, state, and federal institutions and policies have all contributed to White Americans’ disproportionate access to economic and educational opportunities compared to their non-White peers. These injustices continue to play out today within the postsecondary education system.
In the full report entitled “EQUITABLE VALUE : PROMOTING ECONOMIC MOBILITY AND SOCIAL JUSTICE THROUGH POSTSECONDARY EDUCATION”, put forth by the commission, it is clearly stated that equity is the central focal point of the commission: “Equity matters. This is the first principle of the Postsecondary Value Commission, designed deliberately to center and prioritize racial, socioeconomic, and gender equity as the North Star guiding the commission’s work. More specifically, the commission is focused on equitable value for Black, Latinx, Indigenous, underrepresented Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) students, students from low-income backgrounds, and women—as well as the intersectional identities within and across these groups. The commission’s Postsecondary Value Framework requires data to be disaggregated by these key student characteristics to unearth inequities and provide a starting point for policy and programmatic solutions to combat and dismantle them.”
There is absolutely no mistaking it here. A hallmark of Critical Race Theory, one of many sub narratives of Critical Social Justice, assumes that racism and discrimination are at play in every disparity and in every interaction and it’s the activist’s duty to find it.
Read specific actions and proposals outlined in the commission's report.
The second commission is a joint effort between the National Association for College Admissions Counselors (NACAC) and the National Association of Financial Aid Administrators and funded by a grant awarded by the Lumina Foundation.
Read more about this commission and details about the potential implications of adopting it in higher ed policy.