Ethnic Studies as a graduation requirement presented to the SCUSD Board May 21, 2015

Sacramento City Unified School District

Board of Education






WHEREAS, Sacramento, CA is the 2nd most ethnically diverse city in the United States; and


WHEREAS, Sacramento City Unified School District is the 4th most diverse school district in the United States; and


WHEREAS, our students are 37% Hispanic or Latino, 17.4% Asian, 18% African American, 19% White, and 5.3% of students are two or more ethnicities and over 44 languages are spoken in our district; and


WHEREAS, we need a high school curriculum that reflect the diversity of ALL students; and


WHEREAS, only 1 of 13 high schools within our district offers ethnic studies, even though over 80% of our school district populations are students of color; and


WHEREAS, the CA statewide initiative AB101, an initiative that mandates that an A-G ethnic studies be made available at all high schools  is in the appropriation stages in the California Department of Education; and


WHEREAS, the California Teacher’s Association (CTA) has publically declared their support for the AB101 ethnic studies initiative; and


WHEREAS, El Rancho Unified School District, Los Angeles Unified School District, Montebello Unified School District, Santa Monica Unified School District, San Francisco Unified School District, Woodland Unified School District have written and approved, resolutions and board policies to adopt Ethnic Studies as a graduation requirement within their high schools; and


WHEREAS, the goals of SEL (self-awareness, self-management, relationship skills, decision-making, and pro-social behaviors) could be supported through the implementation of an ethnic studies course; and


WHEREAS research data shows that high school ethnic studies classes have reduced drop-out rates of students of color, raised graduation rates, reduced unexcused absences, boosted self-esteem, raised self-efficacy, increased academic engagement, and raised personal empowerment; and


WHEREAS, close to 2500 signatures have been collected in support of this ethnic studies initiative from students, parents, teachers, and community members; and


WHEREAS, our objective is to have all students learn to respect, accept, and love themselves and others.


NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Sacramento City Unified School District Board of Education construct, implement, and sustain an ethnic studies course as a high school graduation requirement.


RESOLVED FURTHER, that an ethnic studies course modeled after an A-G approved course be developed and proposed by November 2015 and accepted by April 2016.


RESOLVED FURTHER, the first phase in of ethnic studies courses happen in Fall 2016 in 3 schools:  CK McClatchy, The Met, and American Legion, with phase two following in Fall 2017 at 5 additional schools, and phase three following in Fall 2018 at the five remaining high schools.


RESOLVED FURTHER, prospective teachers for “Phase 1” will have comprehensive training, professional development, and certification options provided to them by the Sacramento State Ethnic Studies Teacher Training Credentialing Consortium by Spring 2016.


RESOLVED FURTHER, that a funding plan be developed through the LCAP to ensure that the course and tools for its evaluation will be funded comprehensively in a manner and level commensurate with this recognized community need as a local priority.


RESOLVED FURTHER, the ethnic studies curricula and teaching methods be evaluated on a semester to semester basis to make necessary improvements to ensure that its content be relevant, meaningful, and effective to properly address and support the recognized community need.


RESOLVED FURTHER, a committee comprised of current social science teachers, current professors from CSU and UC ethnic studies departments, leaders of ethnic community organizations, A-G curricula specialists, and YOUTH, be established and utilized throughout the process of creating and evaluating this ethnic studies course.


RESOLVED FINALLY, that a meeting for a call to action towards this initiative be declared by the Board of Education no later than the last board meeting of June 2015.


PASSED AND ADOPTED by the Sacramento City Unified School District Board of Education on this ___ day of _______, 20__, by the following vote:


AYES:          ____

NOES:         ____

ABSTAIN:     ____

ABSENT:      ____



Darrel Woo

President of the Board of Education




José L. Banda

Secretary of the Board of Education


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