Readers React

Sanitizing ethnic history in classrooms

To the editor: Thanks to Noah Remnick for his thoughtful piece on the value of ethnic studies programs in K-12 school and in colleges and universities. California needs to offer its elementary, middle and high school students opportunities to "explore race and ethnicity" and to "address issues of Eurocentrism, oppression and identity." ("Why ethnic studies programs are good for California, and America," Op-Ed, July 2)

I hope the first curricular revision will be the fourth grade California missions unit, which presents a dishonest and sanitized account of the forced conversions and forced labors imposed on California's native peoples by the Spanish Catholic missionaries.

Jo Perry, Studio City


To the editor: Remnick calls for ethnic studies courses in K-12 education, in part, to study landmark decisions such as Brown vs. Board of Education and the civil rights movement. These are hardly ethnically focused; rather, they are fundamental to our nation's fabric and a core of any government or history curriculum.

With this logic, the Civil War would need to be taught by an African Studies department and, say, a White Studies department.

Laura Curran, Newport Beach

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