by Hannah Krieg / May 31, 2021
On May 12, the Gov. Jay Inslee signed Senate Bill 5227, which mandates that Washington’s 40 public colleges and universities conduct training sessions and assessments for both faculty and staff around diversity, equity, inclusion and anti-racism starting in the 2022-23 academic year.
According to the bill’s prime sponsor, state Sen. Emily Randall, D-Bremerton, the first draft of this legislation did not include student input, but when the idea came up in her meetings with student lobbyists, they wanted in.
The bill does not prescribe a specific curriculum or programs. Randall, who admits to attending her share of “bad” diversity training sessions, hopes administrators, staff and students will collaborate on an approach that works for their institution. Students from across Washingston state who work on diversity issues have some ideas.