Pennsylvania State Senator calls for AAPI-Inclusive curriculum in schools


The bill aims to foster AAPI heritage appreciation and solidarity to tackle hate crime

Our Bureau

Harrisburg, PA

Pennsylvania State Senator Nikil Saval has introduced a bill to incorporate Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) courses in K-12 schools.

The legislation would require the Department of Education to create an integrated curriculum that includes AAPI persons, history, and contributions to American society and to provide AAPI-related materials to schools in the US state of Pennsylvania.

Saval introduced Senate Bill 839 along with Senator Maria Collett last week to expand education and confront the rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

“Every student in our Commonwealth deserves the opportunity to see their heritage honored as part of the broad fabric of the American experience,” said Saval. “When we are granted an opportunity to learn about each other’s lives, families, and histories, we begin to see how much we share, and how deep our stake is in a world that supports all of us. It is only then that we can stand together, in solidarity, and work to build that world.”

The bill would also commission a study by the State Board of Education to see how school districts in Pennsylvania are teaching AAPI curriculum across the state.

“I’ve received many messages from constituents expressing safety concerns given the rise of attacks on Asian Americans since COVID and calling for education to address these prejudices before they take root,” said Senator Collett.

“This bill is an important first step to make sure our education system reflects all of our peoples’ histories,” Collett added.

According to the most recent Stop AAPI Hate National Report, Pennsylvania ranked 7th for hate incident reports filed between March 2020 and December 2021. Florida, ranked 8th, became the latest state to pass AAPI-inclusive curriculum legislation into law in May 2023.

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