NEWSJuly 18, 2021

Illinois Becomes First State to Require Asian American History to be Taught

Illinois Governor recently signed new legislation mandating new Asian American curriculum

Illinois has just made history for being the first state in the nation to require Asian American history to be taught in public schools. On July 9, 2021, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker signed legislation passing the Teaching Equitable Asian American History (TEAACH) Act, set to go into effect on January 1st for the 2022 - 2023 school year.

"Today, we are reaffirming our commitment to creating more inclusive school environments. We're making Illinois the first state in the nation to require that Asian American history will be taught in public schools, including a unit about the Asian American experience," said Pritzker in a statement. "We are setting a new standard for what it means to truly reckon with our history. It's a new standard that helps us understand one another, and, ultimately, to move ourselves closer to the nation of our ideals."

Illinois Governor signs the TEAACH Act
CNN / cnn.com

According to the new bill, it’ll cover "contributions made by individual Asian Americans in government and the arts, humanities, and sciences, as well as the contributions of Asian American communities to the economic, cultural, social, and political development of the United States." There is no strict curriculum to follow and is moreso up to the elementary and high schools themselves to decide the topics. It’ll also mainly focus on Asian American history in Illinois and Midwest.

State Representative Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz, who sponsored the legislation, stated that "Asian American history is American history. Yet we are often invisible. The TEAACH Act will ensure that the next generation of Asian American students won't need to attend law school to learn about their heritage."

"Empathy comes from understanding. We cannot do better unless we know better. A lack of knowledge is the root cause of discrimination and the best weapon against ignorance is education," 

React to this Post

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0