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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

UC sidelines ‘liberated ethnic studies’ mandate

California students will need an ethnic studies class to get a diploma by 2029-30, but apparently the University of California won’t try to dictate the curriculum, reports John Fensterwald on EdSource.  A UC faculty committee has back-pedaled on a plan to require college applicants to take a version of the “liberated ethnic studies” curriculum rejected by the State Board of Education.

Credit: Normal Rockwell

The UC proposal called for developing “critical consciousness,” “creating and honoring anti-colonial and liberatory movements that struggle for social justice” and “dismantling systems of oppression and dehumanization” in many forms.

That’s very close to a model state curriculum that was “widely criticized for being anti-semitic, too politically correct and filled with jargon,” such as “cisheteropatriarchy” and “hxrstory,” writes Joe Hong on CalMatters.

UCLA Law School Professor Richard Sander, in a May 31 letter signed by 172 UC faculty members, observed that UC has never mandated “learning specific ideas or doctrines.”

The Foundation Against Intolerance and Racism, a national nonprofit, charged the proposed curriculum “pressures students to become activists to foment a political revolution” instead teaching “positive and universal lessons in empathy and compassion across multiple ethnicities.”

“We believe it’s a good thing for people to be exposed to many different ideas, including critical race theory,” said Letitia Kim, managing director of FAIR’s legal network. “But it should not be the only lens through which things are being taught.”

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