We believe children of color should have access to textbooks and supplemental material which strongly emphasizes the contribution of all ethnicities and cultures. School districts need to prioritize the diversity of stakeholders and curriculum administrators. At the very least teachers need flexibility in content choices and districts should push publishers to provide a variety of content options.No longer is it acceptable in the digital age to have one static and often ethnocentric textbook in content areas.
Recent events in America have shown that revisionist are active in the political and social fabric of our society. If our children are to be students of the truth their instruction needs to be robust in establishing a foundation for critical thinking. Omissions and revisions can be countered by including not only diverse perspectives but emphasizing the facts and voices rarely heard in the historical and scientific record.
A cursory view of major education publishers reveals that textbooks are published with mass circulation as the top priority. Therefore, publishers such as McGraw-Hill tend to omit facts or deemphasize events in an attempt to accommodate as many districts as possible. Districts that include stakeholders with vastly different sentiments when it comes to students of color. At Equity4Education we propose the following:
- Investment in non-profit educational publishers from public and private entities
- Petition of major inner-city school districts and boards to diversify their content and curriculum decision makers
- Divestment from traditional hard copy textbooks and investment in digital infrastructure with access for all students.