The state of Connecticut will now require its public high schools to offer courses in black and Latino history, at the latest by the beginning of the 2022 school year.
The state Board of Education approved the measure on Wednesday. The courses initially are to be a full-year elective; however, the CT Mirror reports the board is hoping for “enough momentum” to make the courses a requirement.
“This is the beginning,” the State Education Resource Center’s Ingrid Canady told the board on Wednesday. “Legislators, they are very clear that the goal is for this to happen across every single grade level.”
According to a mid-November draft, the course of study description says the classes “will contribute to the critical consciousness and civic-mindedness competencies of a twenty-first century graduate,” and “ultimately facilitate students’ interest in pursuing further ethnic, anthropology, or human rights studies in the future.”
Connecticut Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona said the courses will help with attendance as students “can connect with what they’re learning”:
Let’s not forget the connection between kids wanting to be in school and kids attending school. And when we see that our attendance rate with Black and Latino students is worse, when we see that our achievement outcomes or academic outcomes are disparate in Connecticut, we have to take real action.
Cardona added students who aren’t black or Latino also will benefit as they classes are a “window into another culture.”
Interestingly, as contemporary “critical study” of history tends to paint many aspects of European exploration in a highly negative light (“invasion,” “colonization,” “genocide” etc.), Lesson 1.3 of the Connecticut course unit template highlights the Moorish invasion of Europe as means of countering the “false narrative of African racial inferiority”:
These adherents of Al- Islam were the battering-ramp that conquered Spain, Southern Europe, and parts of France. They ruled the inhabitants of the Iberian peninsula for 700 hundred years, 711 to 1492. …
Many of the military leaders and rulers were referred to in European literature as Black-a-Moors. General Tarik conquered Spain in 711, the trait of Gibraltar is named for him. It means Tarik’s mountain. The Moors filled the vacuum in Europe during the period known as the” Dark Age,” after Rome had transferred its seat of power to Constantinople in fear of the so -called “barbarian tribes.”
So in this case, vast contributions to civilization such as mathematics, medicine and architecture appear to justify territorial expansion (and the practice of slavery).