Legislators, students push for K-12 Asian American studies
As students push for more inclusive curriculum, some lawmakers, educators and students themselves are working to address gaps in instruction and fight harmful stereotypes by pushing for more Asian American history to be included in K-12 lesson plans.
Illinois would become the first state to require public schools to teach Asian American studies if the governor signs a bill that cleared the state Legislature. Lawmakers have proposed similar mandates this year in Connecticut, New York and Wisconsin.
Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz, an Illinois representative, said she sponsored the bill in response to the increasing anti-Asian violence and rhetoric. Growing up, she said she knew little of the discrimination her family had faced in earlier generations because it wasn’t taught in school and her family did not openly speak about it.
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