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Bergen School District Ends Contract With Pentagon Official Who Mocked 'White Folx'

Kelisa WIng
Kelisa WIng Photo Credit: DODEA

A Bergen County school district is ending its consulting contract with a self-described "woke" federal agency chief who has made publicly disparaging comments about whites.

The comments made by Kelisa Wing -- including her being "exhausted at these white folx" -- ignited calls for her ouster last week as the chief officer for diversity, equity and inclusion in the U.S. Department of Defense's education branch.

The controversy is also being felt on the local level in Cresskill, where Wing has provided "diversity and inclusion training" for its Board of Education employees for the past 18 months.

Wing's paid consulting contract with the district was formally extended at a recent board meeting, but it will be amended Monday night, Sept. 19, Cresskill Schools Supt. Michael Burke told Daily Voice earlier in the day.

"We have decided not to move forward with our work with her," Burke said.

Both the district and Wing "decided mutually that we're going to go in a different direction," the superintendent added.

Concerns were raised after FOX News reported some of Wing's tweets and book excerpts last week. What troubled people most was the fact that Wing's government job is overseeing the education of Pentagon employees' children, including those of active-duty service members.

“I’m exhausted with these white folx in these [professional development] sessions," one of Wing's tweets rea. "[T]his lady actually had the CAUdacity to say that black people can be racist too …"

"Caudacity" is a slang term used to describe some whites.

"I had to stop the session and give Karen the BUSINESS," Wing wrote. "[W]e are not the majority, we don’t have power."

Another of her tweets reads: “[B]eing antiracist means being active against racism … you will NEVER arrive … stop centering this on whiteness."

Wing has frequently referred to white women in her posts as "Karen." She also called former President Trump the "whole boy version of a Karen" and referred to the former education secretary, Betsy DeVos, as "the queen of Karens."

Wing also co-created children's books that said whites have hurt Blacks through undeserved advantages and should confess their privilege.

"Overcoming White privilege is a job that must start with the White community," one book says. "If you are White you might feel bad about hurting others or you might feel afraid to lose this privilege."

In another book, Wing says the Nazis introduced "the modern idea of race."

A third book she co-authored as part of a children's series is called: "What Does It Mean to Defund the Police?"

Wing's Twitter and LinkedIn profiles vanished amid the firestorm that spread in the days after the Cresskill district extended her contract.

The Defense Department, meanwhile, acknowledged that it is looking into her published comments.

The U.S. Department of Defense's Education Activity (DoDEA) branch provides K-12 education to the children of military families in the United States, Europe, the Pacific, the Middle East, western Asia, Guam and Puerto Rico.

Wing, a U.S. Army veteran who has worked for the DOD the past 16 years, reportedly oversees the curriculum.

Federal Republican lawmakers want nothing short of her dismissal.

"I can’t emphasize how destructive these kinds of appointments are on our military," Rep. Michael Waltz, R-Fla, said in a statement. "The overemphasis on race stokes division among our troops and politicizes one of America’s most trusted institutions. I can also tell you the enemy doesn’t give a damn about our skin color and the Pentagon’s focus should be on standards required to win wars."

Burke, the Cresskill schools superintendent, emphasized that the district's relationship with Wing was nothing but positive.

"Kelisa was a very good consultant for us," he said. "Any time she met with us it was with love, equity and growth for all."

Wing was brought on as part of a diversity, equity and inclusion committee that district officials created with "the hope of moving forward with growth, respect and love for everyone," Burke said.

The committee includes board members, community members, students and others and has been extremely well-received and nurtured, he said.

Wing "supported us with that work," the superintendent said. "She came up only a couple of times, but she was wonderful."

District officials are hiring new consultants to continue moving the effort forward, Burke said.

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