By Richard Bammer
In an hour-long virtual news conference, Monday, state schools chief Tony Thurmond announced new efforts to combat increased cases of hate, bigotry and racism in California schools and communities, the “Education to End Hate” initiative.
Thurmond said that the California Department of Education will lead a series of strategies— including educator training grants, partnerships with community leaders, and virtual classroom sessions — that uses the power of education to create a more just society.
“We do not need any more evidence that our country is facing two pandemics: coronavirus and hate. It feels like every day we are seeing heartbreaking examples: more anti-Semitic behavior, bullying of Asian American students because of our president’s rhetoric, Islamophobia, discrimination of our LGBTQ neighbors, and violence directed at people of color,” Thurmond said. “It’s time to double down on our efforts to combat all forms of hate, bias, and bigotry. By digging deeper into the complexities of our diverse and difficult histories — not denying or ignoring them — I believe education can provide the pathway to healing, understanding, and racial and social justice.”