Wednesday, June 01, 2022

Suit Challenges California Group's Ethnic Studies Curriculum As Antisemitic

Last month, suit was filed in a California federal district court seeking to enjoin the Los Angeles public schools from using an ethnic studies curriculum which plaintiffs contend is antisemitic. The complaint (full text) in Concerned Jewish Parents and Teachers of Los Angeles v. Liberated Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum Consortium, (WD CA, filed 5/12/2022), alleges that defendants oppose the broad Ethnic Studies Curriculum approved by the state of California, and instead are attempting to convince schools to teach a curriculum that focuses only on Black Americans, Chicano/Latinos, Native Americans, and Asian American/Pacific Islanders. The complaint alleges in part:

This case is brought to compel public disclosure of, and to enjoin, Defendants’ efforts to insert into the Los Angeles public school curriculum, overtly racist as well as antisemitic teaching material which, as its authors intend, discriminates against a segment of California residents on the basis of their religious beliefs and their national origin—namely American and Middle Eastern-Americans Jews who embrace their religion’s foundational belief in Zionism....

The 55-page complaint alleges that use of the Liberated Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum violates plaintiffs' rights under the 1st and 14th Amendments, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the California Education Code. Among other relief, it seeks an injunction barring the Los Angeles Unified School district from:

including any language, in any teaching materials, asserting that Zionism is not a Jewish belief; denouncing the Jewish belief in the land of Israel as the land promised by God to the Jewish people, or the Jewish belief in Zionism, or asserting that the State of Israel, as the Nation-State of the Jewish people, is illegitimate, or asserting as a fact that the Jewish State is guilty of committing such horrific crimes against others as ethnic cleansing, land theft, apartheid or genocide, or that the Jewish people are not indigenous to the land of Israel or to the Middle East, or denying the State of Israel the right to self-defense; and/or denying the historical or religious connection between the Jewish people and the land of Israel....

The Deborah Project's website has more on the lawsuit.