In Case You Missed It, the Wall Street Journal’s Editorial Board highlighted Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman Virginia Foxx’s (R-NC) oversight efforts to rid medical schools of harmful DEI student-recruitment standards.
Several states have been working to roll back the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) bureaucracy on university campuses, and good for them. But medical schools have resisted, claiming changes might put them at risk with the national accrediting body. That may be changing.
The Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) accredits U.S. medical schools. Its charter specifies that every medical school must have a diversity policy and engage ‘in ongoing, systematic, and focused recruitment and retention activities, to achieve mission-appropriate diversity outcomes’ for students, faculty and staff.
In a letter responding to a questionnaire from the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, LCME says that ‘nothing’ in the text ‘mandates which categories of diversity a medical school must use to satisfy this element.’
The letter from House Education Committee on Education and the Workforce Chairwoman Virginia Foxx also put LCME on the record on the relationship between DEI and laws that prohibit discrimination by race. Asked if it would ‘require or encourage’ medical schools to ‘treat applicants differently’ or award scholarships based on race, the accreditor replied ‘No’ to both questions.
Politicized diversity has loomed large over medical schools in recent years, and many schools have adjusted their admissions requirements to address them.
As we’ve seen in North Carolina and Florida, accreditors can be capricious in pursuing a progressive political agenda, with or without written diversity standards. But medical schools can take the accreditor’s recent answers as a signal to worry less about protecting DEI at the expense of a top-flight medical education.