In our Promoting Anti-Racism and Racial Equity in Fairfield Public Schools Report, our first Actionable Change highlighted the need to diversify curriculum. We are excited that beginning in the 2022-2023 school year, a new course will be offered all over Connecticut. The African American/Black & Puerto Rican/Latino Studies course will be the first of its kind taught in all CT schools.
In June 2019, CT PA 19-12 was passed to develop an African American/Black and Puerto Rican/Latino Course of Studies at the high school level. Legislation identified the State Education Resource Center as the coordinating entity to develop the curriculum as the first, integrated and model statewide curriculum of its kind. In collaboration with partners from the CT State Department of Education, work swiftly began with the design of a comprehensive work plan and the convening of a 150-member Advisory Group representative of educators, students and advocates, historians, scholars, and community members by November 2019.
The course is a one credit, year-long elective in which students will consider the scope of African American/Black and Puerto Rican/Latino contributions to U.S. history, society, economy, and culture. The course is an opportunity for students to explore accomplishments, struggles, intersections, and perspectives they might not have heard from before.
The FPS social studies department did a great job presenting this curriculum to the Board of Education and it will be available to juniors and seniors in the 2022-2023 school year as a one credit elective. It will also give students the opportunity to gain 3 college credits of HI 225 African American History through Sacred Heart University Early College Experience Program.