How to foster tolerance in California? Make ethnic studies a graduation requirement

Source: Sacramento Bee by Luis Alejo

Two years ago, Gov. Jerry Brown signed Assembly Bill 2016, which is set to create the first statewide model curriculum on ethnic studies by 2019. No other state had ever approved such a bill to help standardize the courses that arose 50 years ago out of the Third World Liberation Front strikes at San Francisco State and UC Berkeley in 1968.

This year, Assemblyman Jose Medina, D-Riverside, himself a former ethnic studies high school teacher, is championing a bill to make ethnic studies a graduation requirement in all California public high schools.

Medina has introduced AB 2772, which would require public high schools and charter schools to offer a course in ethnic studies beginning in the 2021–22 school year. It also would add a course in ethnic studies to high school graduation requirements in social studies commencing with the 2023–24 school year. Last month, the Assembly Education Committee gave the bill its first approval with a bipartisan 5-1 vote. It now must get out of the Appropriations Committee.