In a move to tackle the growing Asian hate across the city, education officials announced on Thursday the addition of a new curriculum “designed to center the experiences and voices” of Asian American and Pacific Islander families in public schools.
Set to be piloted as shorter units across all grades this fall, the curriculum will help students relate to one another amid a citywide uptick in violence against New Yorkers of Asian descent, Mayor Eric Adams said at a press conference.
“It’s tragic when our babies are academically smart but not emotionally intelligent and don’t develop the full personhood of who they ought to be,” Adams told reporters. “That’s not education — that’s a robotic system that produces robots,” he added. “We’re producing scholars, intelligent future leaders of this city and this country. That’s what this is doing today.”
The DOE’s Office of Curriculum and Instruction will develop interdisciplinary lessons for each grade that officials said will highlight Asian American history and culture, and increase engagement among students who would now recognize themselves in the curriculum. The move will also provide professional development for teachers integrating the material into their broader school lessons, as well as new resources and books.
The initiative also came after a group of Asian American families demanded inclusion in the DOE’s cultural curriculum, saying they had been excluded from recent diversity pushes. A full multidisciplinary curriculum will be available to all schools starting in the spring of 2024.