Learning Latino History in School

LATINO VOICES

04/10/2017 11:21 am ET |

 
John Leguizamo Says Learing Latino History
in School Would've Changed his Life 

By Carolina Moreno

John Leguizamo’s new one-man show, “Latin History for Morons,” is all about giving Latinos credit for their place in U.S. history.  

In an interview with Vogue published Thursday, the 52-year-old discussed what motivated him to write the show, which is currently running at New York City’s Public Theater.

Leguizamo recalled being treated like a foreigner as a kid because of his Latino heritage. Even today, the star said he’s told things like “You don’t belong here” on Twitter. But after discovering that his son was experiencing the same kind of bullying in school, he decided to read up on Latino heroes in U.S. history.

“If in my son’s class they would have read all the Latin contributions, people wouldn’t be so ready to attack us,” he told Vogue.

When asked about whether he was taught anything about Latino contributions to the country while in high school, Leguizamo said it was “nonexistent” in his education.

“There was a little bit of improvement in my son’s education, but Latin and black contributions — and I don’t mean to lump us together — were nonexistent in my public school,” Leguizamo said. “Even when I went to college, there was nothing. When I was studying the Civil War, there was nothing about everything we did, not one mention of any participation or contribution, ever. And it would’ve changed my life.”

In 2015, Leguizamo made the point that high school history makes Latino students feel “invisible” during a HuffPost Live interview.

“We’re not taught anything that we contributed to this country and we’ve been around for 500 years,” Leguizamo said. “Just imagine, you’re a white kid and all of a sudden everybody’s Latin and everything they’re teaching you is Latin and you don’t hear anything about yourself or about your contributions ... and you feel like you haven’t contributed anything. How would you feel? How would you think of your future? How would you think of your participation in American culture?”

Faculty Equity and Diversity Awards
CCA is proud to have initiated its Faculty Equity and Diversity Awards for outstanding service on behalf of community college faculty. The GBLT Award, in honor of David Sanchez, CTA’s first openly gay president, recognizes faculty who have supported, promoted and educated our community college family regarding gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) issues. The Ethnic Minority Award, in honor of Mary Ann Pacheco, a Hispanic professor at Rio Hondo College, is given to faculty who promote equal access and treatment for minorities on campus. The Part-time Faculty Award in honor of David Milroy, another longtime faculty activist, is awarded to faculty who have worked to improve working conditions for part-time faculty.
Award winners are honored during CCA’s annual Spring Conference. Nominations may be by self-nomination, chapter nomination, or any member may nominate another member. The nominee must agree to be nominated. 
CTA Equity Team for Higher Education
Every year, CTA establishes an Equity Team for Higher Education. In CTA, Higher Education is made up of CCA, CFA (the California Faculty Association for CSU faculty), SCTA (Student CTA for college students going into teaching) and ICCUFA (the association for private colleges and universities). The Equity Team meets in July following the Presidents Conference to brainstorm on its action plan for the year. The objective is to look at equity across Higher Education and think of ways we can encourage equity and greater diversity. The 2016-17 Action Plan will emphasize "The Future of Our Profession" by inviting Student CTA to our Winter Conference (February 24-26) and bringing in more presentations that focus on equity -- past and future. CCA members will be presenting a session at the CTA Equity and Human Rights Conference in March and CCA as an organization will be hosting a Social Justice Forum in May. If this is an area of interest for you, we would love to have you join us. Look for information on the May Social Justice Forum by March 1.
Does Ethnicity Impact Student Learning?
California’s community colleges must become more responsive to the needs of a diverse student population, which means that faculty must become more diverse, says Thuy Thi Nguyen, former Chief Counsel for the Chancellor’s Office and currently President of Foothill College, pictured at right. She points to a University of California Santa Cruz study of De Anza College data that shows achievement gaps narrowed from 50 to 80 percent when minority students were taught by people who looked like them. Read more about the study. Provided here is a list of other resources on the topic.

Student Diversity at More Than 4,600 Institutions
Chronicle of Higher Education
Sept. 18, 2016

The Chronicle of Higher Education in September 2016 featured a table showing the race, ethnicity, and gender of students at 4,605 colleges and universities in the fall of 2014, the latest year for which statistics are available from the U.S. Department of Education.

The figures are from the Education Department’s Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System. They include undergraduate, graduate, and professional-school students attending full time and part time in the 50 states and Washington, D.C. Find the complete story and table from the Chronicle of Higher Education here.
Ageism and the Job Hunt
Ageism may now be more pervasive than sexism or racism, according to the World Health Organization. Learn more about how it affects higher education and your chances of employment as an older adult in Ageism and the Job Hunt an article that appeared in Higher Ed Jobs.

Closed Doors
Black and Latino Students are Excluded from Top Public Universities
Center for American Progress
By Elizabeth Baylor
In the fall of 2014, 297,000 African American and Latino students enrolled in America’s top public research universities. While access to such elite educations will likely put these individuals on a path for lifelong success, a new analysis of federal data from the Center for American Progress shows that if these students were proportionately represented, another 193,000 students of color would have received the same opportunity.
Instead, in a pattern that repeats itself in nearly every state, the doors to America’s top public colleges remain firmly closed to the vast majority of black and Latino undergraduate students. As a result, in nearly every state, these students are significantly overrepresented at less-selective public four-year colleges, as well as at community colleges, compared with their white and Asian peers. Read the complete article.
State of Community College’s LGBTQ Resources and Services
In a few key areas, the California Community College system is advancing support for LGBTQ students' success, partly influenced by AB 620 (2011). This assembly bill amended the Education Code to encourage (but not require) CCC campuses to collect aggregate data on sexual orientation and gender identity of students and staff; and to designate a staff point person "to address the needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender faculty, staff, and students." Find out what’s happening on community colleges across the state in this round-up from the California Campus LGBTQ Centers blogspot.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship
Scholarship Fund Drive
In 1968, after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., CTA and Student CTA (SCTA) established a living memorial in the form of a scholarship fund to aide members of ethnic minorities in preparing for teaching-related careers in public education. The CTA Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Scholarship Fund is an important component to help recruit more ethnic minority teachers into our profession. The scholarship fund is supported by voluntary contributions, and the drive to raise funds is on NOW! Both individuals and chapters have an opportunity to contribute at a variety of levels.The application is available online in October each year.
LGBT Youth at Risk
Lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) teens are far more likely to experience violence and bullying, and attempt suicide, than their heterosexual peers, according to new national data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The data show just how deeply stigma and discrimination affect LGBTQ youth, how urgently they need their communities’ support and affirmation, and how far we have to go in protecting them. Read more from the Human Rights Campaign.
Transgender on Campus
As part of a series on transgender students in the Chronicle of Higher Education, multimedia producer Julia Schmalz interviewed more than a dozen students to find out what keeps them from thriving in college. Read the reports, Diversity in Academe: Transgender on Campus
and watch her video.
Cesar E. Chavez Awards
The César E. Chávez Memorial Education Awards Program provides recognition for students and their teachers who demonstrate an understanding of the vision and guiding principles by which César E. Chávez lived his life. The Awards Program honors the memory of this great man and ensures that the spirit of his work continues in the classrooms of California. Click here to view the César E. Chávez Memorial Education Awards page.
Plan to attend CCA’s 2017 Fall Conference

CCA’s three conferences have successfully concluded for 2016-17, but you can look forward to attending the 2017 Fall Conference at the Marriott Hotel in San Jose Oct. 13-15. For more information on CCA’s conferences, check out the Conference section.

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