Sandra Stotsky, NAS board member and head of the Department of Education Reform at the University of Arkansas, testified last week at the TUSD (Tucson Unified School District) hearings in Tucson, Arizona.
TUSD's Mexican-American studies program (formerly known as La Raza studies), came under scrutiny several years ago when its curriculum was found to promote resentment toward white people. The program drew heavily on Paulo Freire's critical race pedagogy, which appeals to a sense of oppression. In May 2010, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer passed a law designed specifically to confront the TUSD program, a law "which “prohibits a school district or charter school from including courses or classes that either promote the overthrow of the
Mexican-American studies at TUSD, however, did not end, and now Arizona schools superintendent John Huppenthal is challenging the program as violating the law.
NAS has been following the Raza/Mexican-American studies controversy for several years:
Protecting the Prickly: La Raza Studies, September 4, 2008
U Arizona Celebrates Chicano Walk-Out Day with a Teach-In, September 16, 2009
Arizona Ends Divisive Chicano Studies in Schools, May 13, 2010
Ethnic Studies Teachers Sue to Reinstate La Raza Programs, November 5, 2010