Judicial Watch • Public School Teachers Sue To Reinstate La Raza Studies

Public School Teachers Sue To Reinstate La Raza Studies

Public School Teachers Sue To Reinstate La Raza Studies

OCTOBER 22, 2010

Eliminating a radical La Raza studies program in a public school district is unconstitutional and restricts free speech, according to a group of Arizona teachers who are suing the state to reinstate the taxpayer-financed curriculum that one instructor says ignited racial hostility.

The Tucson Unified School District’s Mexican American/Raza Studies program was eliminated earlier this year when the state enacted a measure to stop funding ethnic studies curriculums that advocate the overthrow of the U.S. government. In 1998 the district created the Mexican American/Raza Studies division, renamed “Mexican-American Studies” last year to sound less extremist, to promote the Chicano agenda.

A few years ago a Hispanic history teacher in the district denounced the curriculum’s biased theme that Mexican-Americans continue to be victims of a racist American society driven by the interests of middle and upper-class whites. Kids were taught that the southwestern  United States was taken from Mexicans because of the insatiable greed of the Yankee who acquired values from the corrupted ethos of western civilization, the teacher wrote in a newspaper opinion piece.

Students also learned that California, Arizona, New Mexico and parts of Colorado and Texas are really Aztlan, the ancient homeland of the Aztecs, and still rightfully belong to their descendants, people of indigenous Mexican heritage. Also, the former Tucson teacher said, students were told that few Mexicans took advanced high school courses because their “white teachers” didn’t believe they were capable and wanted to prevent them from getting ahead.

The curriculum engendered racial irresponsibly, demeaned America’s civil institutions, undermined public servants, discounted any virtues in western civilization and taught disdain for American sovereignty, according the teacher who blew the whistle on the La Raza program. He also revealed that many of the instructors who taught the courses were not certified to teach.

The teachers who are suing to renew public funding for the district’s Chicano studies department claim in their complaint that their free speech has been impermissibly infringed by the state. Furthermore, they claim that students who take the La Raza courses score higher on standardizes tests, graduate from high school at higher rates, improve their overall grades and have better school attendance records.


 

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