“We Want an Educational System Where Many Cultures Fit”
As the media scrambled to cover the extraordinary uprising at the Tucson Unified School District board meeting last night, where hundreds of students and community members turned out in protest and nine Ethnic Studies/Mexican American Studies (MAS) students from the UNIDOS group chained themselves to the board members chairs to protest a controversial resolution that would have terminated their acclaimed program’s core curriculum accreditation, few noted that UNIDOS actually presented a counter resolution.
Created in response to H.B. 2281, the controversial ban on Ethnic Studies throughout the state of Arizona, U.N.I.D.O.S. (United Non-discriminatory Individuals Demanding Our Studies) is a new Tucson youth coalition of students from local high schools, alumni and community members, according to alumni and Pima College student Leilani Clark, citing the group’s mission statement, “who formed in response of the growing attacks on education and culture by the Arizona legislature. As Ethnic Studies students we envision a society based on the values of respect, equality, justice, diversity and equitable education for all. We want an educational system, not just in Arizona, but beyond, where many cultures fit in.”