Multicultural Education, as well as other initiatives related to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), are being seriously challenged today. These challenges include books that are being banned from public and school libraries that focus on race and LGBTQ topics, the false claims being made about the teaching of critical race theory in the schools, and the Supreme Court decision that made affirmative action in colleges and universities unconstitutional. These challenges are arising in part because of the continuing progress diversity and inclusion issues has made since the national and world-wide protests occurred after the killing of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis in May 2020. As the historian Carol Anderson (2016) maintains in White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide, Black progress consistently triggers White resistance and backlash.
A major goal of this session is to describe the success and institutionalization of multicultural education that has occurred since the 1960s. The success and institutionalization of multicultural education provides a strong foundation for countering the current attacks on diversity as well as for strengthening and institutionalizing it in schools, colleges, and universities. The attacks and efforts to undermine the progress that has been made in diversity, equity, and inclusion will also be discussed in this session. This session will also envision the future of multicultural education as it responds to its current challenges, works to maintain its intellectual integrity, and incorporates new generations of students and scholars, including generations X, Y, Z, and Alpha.