Classroom Wars

Natalia Mehlman Petrzela, “Classroom Wars” Essay #4—Natalia Mehlman Petrzela, “Classroom Wars”. (IT’S A BOOK) Whether we are talking about the violence of settler colonialism embedded in federal Indian schools, the rise of mass incarceration in our nation, the formation of Asian Americans as model minorities through racial liberalism and cultural diplomacy, one constant throughout our course is that the manifestation of American ideas into our social world have had both the power to liberate people and the power to perpetuate colonialist, racist, classist, sexist, and ableist structures. Historian Natalia Petrzela reminds us that the ideas that gave birth to bilingual education cradled both assimilationist strategies and pluralist strategies. Classroom Wars takes up the subject of Latinxs communities in California and the K-12 classroom in the 1960s and 1970s as the culture wars emerged between conservatives, liberals, and even the radical left. With that in mind, this paper asks you to focus on the bilingual education part of her book (Chapters 1-4). Suppose you have been asked to speak to an audience of high school students in order to educate them on the origins of bilingual-bicultural education. While the audience is made up of students who have a multitude of views on education ranging from liberal to moderate and conservative, before you begin, some audience members tell you that all they have heard about bilingual education is that it is a “very liberal idea.” How do you respond, given what you’ve learned in Classroom Wars? Address your audience in the form of an essay that explains the history of bilingual-bicultural education in California during the 1960s and 1970s by focusing on one or two major developments or debates that resonated with the culture wars of the nation. Some major developments or ideas to consider as you formulate your thesis: Surprising political alliances: Republican and Democratic support for bilingual ed, or Latinos and Asian Americans’ unlikely alliance In what ways was bilingual ed both assimilationist and pluralist? How and why did bilingual ed go from not very political to highly political? Consider how student protest shaped the debate over bilingual ed and educational inequality The types of resistance and discourses of resistance generated against bilingual ed How conservatives changed their view point on bilingual ed from the earliest incarnations of the program to after social unrest in late 1960s/early 70s Ernesto Galarza Max Rafferty Lau v. Nichols (1974) Los Angeles versus San Francisco as two distinct examples of bilingual ed activism and what it accomplished Why is bilingual ed remembered as a very liberal idea and is that an accurate way to remember it from a historical standpoint? When and for what reason was the “family” invoked in debates over bilingual ed? The propagation of deficiency theories in casting minority school children. Limit to 3-4 pages, double-spaced, 12 point font, Times New Roman, one-inch margins all around, as a .doc, .docx, or Google doc, not as a PDF. Your paper should be organized by making an argument or claim and supporting it with evidence from the book. Make sure that the argument you are making is clear and in the first paragraph(s) of the letter.