Next Year, There Will Be An LGBTQ+ Studies Class As Well As An Ethnic Studies Class, in California

Next Year, There Will Be An LGBTQ+ Studies Class As Well As An Ethnic Studies Class, in California

Next school year, MHS will offer a range of ethnic studies classes. Assistant Principal Jonathan Mach said that one of these classes will be LGBTQ+ ethnic studies.

EdSource says that starting with the class of 2030, all high school students in California will have to take a one-semester course in ethnic studies.

That’s what the California Department of Education’s Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum says: “addressing racialized experiences and ethnic differences as real and unique.”

Next year, English teacher Brett Webber will teach the Ethnic Studies LGBTQ+ class. He said that this class is meant to focus on LGBTQ+ studies specifically, while the Ethnic Studies class covers a wider range of topics related to diversity.

“Our differences as people are what make us unique,” Webber said. “For some, being LGBTQ is what makes them who they are.” The fact that they are different is part of who they are. I think that’s how the class fits into ethnic studies.

As the Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum says, “courses in ethnic studies can look different.” However, the historical struggle of communities of color to fight racism, discrimination, and oppression, while taking into account how identities like gender, class, and sexuality interact with each other, is at the heart of any ethnic studies course. These students question the systems that keep inequality going.

Mach said that LGBTQ+ ethnic studies can be a great way for students to learn about and understand the history and experiences of the LGBTQ+ group better.

Mach said, “Every culture has a way of understanding the LGBTQ community.” This understanding goes back a long way and is deep in all races and cultures. However, the way people approach it and how it came to be can be very similar or very different. We’d all be facing it, so wouldn’t it be time for an ethnic studies talk?”

Webber said that the course will cover LGBTQ+ writing, the roles of LGBTQ+ people in history, and the progress made for LGBTQ+ rights in the U.S. and around the world. He also said that he hoped the kids would be able to have more open minds after taking this class.

Webber said, “The main goal is education—to understand the world and the culture in which we live.” “The better we understand each other, how the world works, and how we all deal with having different cultures and ways of thinking, the better it is for education.”

Being a part of the LGBTQ+ community, sophomore Edwin Rivera thinks that the course should teach students about how that group became well-known, he said.

Rivera said, “Adding this class makes me feel more respected because I know that the people in my community are getting fair treatment.”

Webber said that since ethnic studies LGBTQ+ is an optional class, he thinks it should be fun and interesting with not much homework.

Webber said, “A semester is made up of three six-week terms. The first six weeks are going to be spent studying history.” In the second six weeks, we will work on a project where we will study an LGBTQ person or event from history. The project could be about the Stonewall riots, the history of gay marriage, or anything else that sounds interesting. Then we’ll read a book for six weeks in the third term.

Even though Rivera didn’t sign up for the LGBTQ+ ethnic studies class, he said that adding it would help kids who aren’t already learning about these issues.

Rivera said, “I don’t think I should put myself out there too much because I’m happy with who I am, and some people might bring that down.” “But I’m still going to be myself.”

On November 20, 2023, Webber suggested the LGBTQ+ ethnic studies course. It was quickly approved by the Curriculum Policy Council to meet G credit standards for A-G requirements, according to Mach.

“For four or five years,” Webber said, “I had been thinking about it.” “I didn’t say it out loud until it was time for what they call “passion projects,” which are things that get us excited and make us want to teach.

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Webber said that he hopes even more classes in ethnic studies will be added in the next few years.
Webber said, “I think everything is an important part of history at school.” “You could study a lot of different things.” I picked to study writing and English. Some people choose to study physics or engineering. “Everything should be looked into.”

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