Students end sit-in outside University of Oklahoma offices
NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Dozens of students at the University of Oklahoma have ended a sit-in outside the university’s administrative offices following two instances in which professors used racial slurs in their classrooms.
The three-day sit-in organized by the Black Emergency Response Team, known as BERT, ended Friday with the student group saying that progress had been made.
OU Dean of Students David Surratt said in a statement Friday that the students “raised legitimate concerns” and their demands “were actually solutions” the university has included in a strategic plan to be presented to OU regents. One idea was the creation of a student advisory committee.
BERT co-director Miles Francisco told The Oklahoman that the student advisory committee will provide “insights and advice to the office of the senior president and provost.”
OU Interim President Joseph Harroz Jr. had rejected the group’s demand that Provost Kyle Harper resign. Francisco said that when it was clear Harper wouldn’t resign, they gave a new list of demands “that would ensure some accountability and checks on the office of the provost to bring about equity.”
The sit-in came days after Harroz announced that a history professor read from a historical document in class that used the N-word repeatedly. Earlier this month, an OU journalism professor stepped down from teaching the course for the rest of the semester after telling students during class that the N-word is no more offensive than the term “boomer.”