Gay Education Becomes Mandatory in California Schools

Although California was not the first state to legalize gay marriage in the USA, it will be the first to require gay history in its public schools as part of the social studies curriculum.

On July 14, 2011, Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that will require schools to include the contributions of American gays and lesbians in their instruction and textbooks. Schools must start implementing this new change in curriculum in their schools by January 2012; however, textbooks probably will not be updated for several years.

“This is definitely a step forward,” said Mark Leno, an openly gay state senator from California. “I’m hopeful that other states will follow. We are failing our students when we don’t teach them about the broad diversity of human experience.”

This new addition to the school’s curriculum is not unheard of. California also requires their schools to teach about the contributions of other minorities, including African Americans and women. The addition of gay education could help gay students who are being bullied. Recently, there was a highly publicized string of gay teenagers who committed suicide due to bullying because they were gay.

“There is an increasing awareness in the public and among elected officials that we have to do something to address the problems of bullying, and the negative consequences [for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students],” said Carolyn Laub. Laub is the director of the Gay-Straight Alliance Network, an organization that works for equal rights for GLBT people.

Via The New York Times

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