Diversity spending info from higher ed sought by Louisiana lawmakers

The Louisiana Senate gave final passage Tuesday to a bill that would require K-12 schools, colleges and universities to submit reports on their diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) programs.

House Bill 904, by Rep. Emily Chenevert, R-Baton Rouge, requires school-level reports on all DEI personnel, programs and spending at all Louisiana schools. Her bill is similar to a resolution filed last year that was defeated after higher education leaders fought back against it, calling the measure unnecessary. Chenevert’s bill passed on a 27-10 vote.

Attacks on diversity, equity and inclusion are often premised on the idea that such programs bloat college budgets and increase student debt, in addition to conflicting with conservative viewpoints. Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis requested a similar report in 2022. A review of this report by the Chronicle of Higher Education found no institution devoted more than 1% of its budget on DEI undertakings, with some spending as little as $9,000.

Read more from the Louisiana Illuminator.

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