Ethnic Studies


Beginning next fall, all San Francisco public schools will offer a class called Ethnic Studies. It’s a look at American history and culture from the perspective of people who aren't white. It’s also a chance to break down race in the classroom, and deal with tough concepts like unconscious racism and structural inequality.

Last month, the San Francisco school board unanimously agreed to expand ethnic studies courses to all San Francisco High Schools starting next fall. About 90 percent of the district is made up of people of color. Courses on ethnic identity and race-relations are currently being taught at five high schools as part of a pilot program initiated six years ago. District officials say the classes have improved the attendance and GPAS at those schools.

From our partners at the East Bay Express

San Francisco State University

San Francisco has pioneered many concepts for the country. One of them is recognizing the importance of a college education that’s diverse, and multicultural, reflecting the populace. And so, the country’s first Department of Ethnic Studies was launched at San Francisco State University in 1968.

On today's Your Call we’ll talk about bringing diversity into higher education. How do you do it? How do you know when it’s working? We’ll look back at the history of ethnic studies and try and make sense of the battles going on today. What does ethnic studies really mean? How about diversity studies? What has been gained by the creation of these departments and what may be lost in their consolidation?