House Approves Bill to Ensure Culturally Competent History is Provided to Students

(Mar. 18) – The House approved a bill by Rep. Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez, D-Denver, and Rep. Bri Buentello, D-Pueblo, to ensure the inclusion of American-Indians, Latinos, African-Americans and Asian-Americans in social studies courses in Colorado’s classrooms.

“Our state and our country are comprised of the diverse individuals and communities that have moved or immigrated here and those that have been here for many centuries. That is what makes us strong but for too long, these communities have been excluded from our teaching of history,” said Rep. Gonzales-Gutierrez, D-Denver. “With an increase in division among some of our communities, it would be beneficial for all children and youth to learn about each other’s background and to be able to see themselves in the history books.”

This bill would establish a sixteen member commission to provide recommendations to the Department of Education so that those standards and programs accurately reflect the history, culture, social contributions, and civil government of the United States and Colorado, including the contributions and influence of American Indians, Latinos, African Americans, Asian Americans and reflecting them accurately and inclusively.

“Teaching inclusive curriculum boosts test scores and student engagement,” said Rep. Buentello. “I’m proud to sponsor this bill to ensure that the history taught in our state is truly inclusive and tells our country’s full story.”

Parents, teachers, administrators and school board members testified in support of the bill at a hearing this month.

HB19-1192 passed on a vote of 40-24. The bill now goes to the Senate.

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