Calif. moves step closer to adopting new history & social studies teaching framework

Calif. moves step closer to adopting new history & social studies teaching framework

California on Thursday reached a step closer to adopting a new history & social studies teaching framework as the Instructional Quality Commission approved the plan.

The change aims at reflecting California’s diverse student population. It may be noted here that California accounts for the largest K-12 population in the United States. Around two-thirds of the state’s 6.2 million students are either Latino or Asian. Thus, any changes in textbooks for Californian students often trigger changes in other states.

The path to a new history & social studies framework has been long as well as contentious as ethnic groups have been demanding something different in how textbooks present their people and how they are discussed in classrooms.

Thomas Adams, the Instructional Quality Commission’s executive director, said in opening remarks, “We do not consider diversity a hurdle. We do not consider diversity another problem to solve. We consider it an asset.”

For higher grade students, the new framework calls for more details about contributions made by Filipinos to the nation’s growth and their efforts during Second World War. In addition, they want a section about human trafficking focused on Asian women taken by the Japanese military during the Second World War to serve as sex slaves.

The issue will now go to the California Board of Education, which has final say over any sort of new teaching guidelines for millions of students in the state.

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