This story will be old news for a lot of us who follow education, but I couldn't help but think about our study of engagement in Universal Design for Learning when reading about the decision to end Mexican-American studies in Arizona. The program has had proven success in helping Hispanic students graduate high school and enter college, but that was deemed irrelevant when compared to the threat of an "anti-white" curriculum.
Michael Winerip, as usual, has a potent take on the story here. The story was also covered in it's own brilliant way by The Daily Show here:
|The Daily Show with Jon Stewart||Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c|
|Tucson's Mexican-American Studies Ban|
The curriculum was also the subject of a documentary, Precious Knowledge, which was screened at the kick off of the Alumni of Color Conference.
I think in all, this curriculum is a powerful example of the importance of engagement. As my professor Dr. David Rose has explained numerous times, engagement is inseparable from the other processes of learning. The fact that teachers found a way to engage some of their most "at-risk" students, and that tool was stripped from them is truly tragic.