Monday, November 7, 2016

Re-posted from Angela Valenzuela's Blog, Educational Equity, Politics & Policy in Texas: Update on the Responsible Ethnic Studies Textbook

Not this time! #Reject the Text!

My last post told you about a Spanish I textbook, used throughout most Texas districts, that talked about "people who speak Spanish" as an exotic other:  "they" eat tortillas, "they" depend on corn as a staple in their diet, essentially "they" are not who we (the Anglos who choose the textbooks and and who refuse to acknowledge -- or maybe are afraid to acknowledge -- the emerging majority of Latino youth in our schools) -- "they" are not who "we" are.  That demeaning textbook was used year after year with, so far as I know, no outcry from students, their parents, or -- and this is very sad -- their teachers.

No such silence has greeted an openly racist, erroneous text being proposed to teach "Mexican American Heritage" in Texas schools.  The Texas State Board of Education will meet next week to vote on state approval of this book. The book has inspired a movement: historians, parents, teachers, community activists, even some elected officials have spoken out against it. This book is a blatant attempt to colonize children of Mexican, Salvadoran, Nicaraguan, Cuban -- indeed Mexican-American -- heritage.  In adopting this book, the state would be officially sanctioning a definition of these children and their families as "lazy" -- and worse.   

Let  the State Board of Education know you refuse to let your tax dollars pay for racist textbooks.  Sign the petition to  Reject the Text, then share the petition with your friends.  Write or call your SBOE member -- or all of them.  Sign up to speak at the hearing.    

We can't let cynical, racist, opportunist publishers work against our goals of equitable, culturally rich, educationally authentic learning for all our children.    We can't let the state board members think silence means we think this book and its message are ok.  

I'm including the link to Angela Valenzuela's post so you can learn more about why this is the wrong book for Mexican American Studies -- or for any of our kids -- and how you can take action against it.  Read what she has to say, sign the petition, choose a path of action, then link on "comments" to let me know what you think.

Educational Equity, Politics & Policy in Texas: Update on the Responsible Ethnic Studies Textbook ...: Today is Día de los Muertos, a holiday observed on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border to remember loved ones lost, and it is part of ... 

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