California Leads the Way Teaching LGBT History to Schoolchildren

Historians in the News
tags: education, California, LGBT



As goes California, so goes the nation—at least, that’s what LGBT advocates in the Golden State are hoping when it comes to a set of new, inclusive K-8 history textbooks. As first reported by The Advocate, the California State Board of Education approved 10 textbooks last week for use in K-8 classrooms that cover the contributions of LGBT people and people with disabilities to American history. 

The road to this point has been six years long: In 2011, the California state legislature passed Sen. Mark Leno’s Fair, Accurate, Inclusive and Respectful (FAIR) Education Act, which required classroom instruction in the state to include information about the contributions of a wide range of Americans, including Native Americans, LGBT people, and people with disabilities. 

Last July, as the Los Angeles Times reported, the State Board of Education unanimously approved a framework to begin implementing these provisions in history and social science curricula. And now, those LGBT-inclusive history textbooks have become a reality.

California isn’t just the first state to do something like this; it’s the only one. In fact, some states still expressly prohibit any positive discussion of LGBT issues under “no promo homo” laws….




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