Gee says meeting with Putnam County commissioners productive

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia University President Gordon Gee says he had a “wonderful” meeting with two Putnam County commissioners this week and is confident the commission will be committed to funding WVU Extension and 4-H programs.

Gordon Gee

The meeting with Gee came after a vote this week by the commission on a resolution calling for funding to be cut to any group that promoted or taught Critical Race Theory (CRT).

Gee said he assured both Putnam County Commission President Ron Foster and Commissioner Andy Skidmore that WVU does not “teach any doctrine or adopt any doctrine.”

CRT is an academic concept that says racism is part of everyday life, part of the social fabric, which impacts policies and many areas of life including the legal system.

“In Putnam County and in the state of West Virginia, Critical Race Theory is not being taught. The school board says that, the state school board says that, the superintendent of Putnam County schools has said that–so they (Putnam County Commission) were just taking a stand,” Gee said Friday during an appearance on MetroNews “Talkline.”

He said the commission had every right to do so.

“Saying that, they need to understand, we do not teach that as a doctrine in the university or in any of our extension programs,” Gee said.

Gee said the commission has agreed to revisit the funding decisions. He said the meeting was beneficial for both sides.

“When you sit down with people and actually have a conversation, what we discovered is the fact that we had much more to agree with than to disagree with. That’s what we need to be doing in this nation,” Gee said.

Gee said the commissioners are going to visit the WVU campus soon to get a firsthand look at some of the projects the university is involved in.

Gee said he had never been asked about CRT before.