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ESCONDIDO : City Schools OK Multiculture Texts

San Diego County Digest

March 11, 1992

A $3.2-million set of social studies textbooks that promote cultural diversity and the contributions of ethnic groups to world and American history were approved 5 to 0 Tuesday by San Diego city schools trustees.

The texts will be used in the fourth to eighth grades beginning this summer in year-round classes. They were piloted in various district schools last fall on a 4-1 vote by board members last spring. Pilot teachers and Supt. Tom Payzant recommended general use to the board Tuesday.

The texts from Houghton-Mifflin publishing company have been controversial among some ethnic groups who argued that the books do not go far enough in recognizing multiculturalism. Others criticized the books for veering too much from traditional European-American views of the nation and world.

Trustee Shirley Weber, the board's only black member who voted against the pilot last year, approved the books Tuesday after reading to her colleagues a letter from Houghton-Mifflin executive Ray A. Shepard, promising more minority authors when the texts are revised later in the decade.

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