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PZC Congratulates IQC for Progress on Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum

(November 19th, 2020 — Sacramento, CA) – Progressive Zionists of California congratulates the IQC for positive additions to the Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum, approved by the Instructional Quality Commission during their November 18-19, 2020 meeting. We especially applaud the inclusion of two lesson plans about the Jewish American experience to the appendix of the curriculum. 

 “We look forward to the December draft, and working with our partners to ensure that minority communities’ concerns are addressed in the final curriculum, said Susan George, Executive Director of PZC. “While many positive changes were adopted, we anticipate advocating for additional refinements. However, we are pleased with the representation of the breadth of the Jewish community in the approved lesson plans, especially regarding Mizrahi Jews and various ways Jewish identity intersects with the four core Ethnic Studies groups.” 

The IQC public comments on November 18 featured a parade of bad faith attacks on the Jewish community. While some PZC volunteers spoke about the need for sensitivity around the American Jewish experience—and especially for the need for any curriculum to appropriately address the diversity of California’s Jewish American community—a number of anti-Israel extremists smeared them as white supremacists and Trump supporters. While it is unfortunate the Trump administration negatively politicizes issues around antisemitism, it is equally true that many of the last-minute additions to the ESMC by virulently anti-Israel organizations would have the same negative impact on the Jewish community. 

PZC anticipates the next draft of the curriculum for public review in December. We will continue to collaborate with our partners to ensure the final draft of the ESMC meets the highest standards for all students. 

About Progressive Zionists of California

Progressive Zionists of California (PZC) is a grassroots collective of activists and California Democratic Party leaders dedicated to reshaping the discourse around Zionism and antisemitism in California Democratic politics. PZC educates activists about antisemitism and intersectional Zionism with a firm commitment to Palestinian statehood. Our constituents advocate for pragmatic progressive platforms, resolutions, and legislation around domestic and Israel-related issues.

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