Campus Reform | Ethnic studies, 'anti-racist initiatives' cost CA taxpayers over $5 million

Ethnic studies, 'anti-racist initiatives' cost CA taxpayers over $5 million

The new California state budget includes $5.6 million for 'anti-racist initiatives' at higher education institutions.

The money will fund the implementation of a 2020 law requiring all undergraduate students at public four-year institutions to take an ethnic studies course.

California’s 2021-2022 budget includes “increase of $5.6 million" for "systemwide anti-racism initiatives," which will fund last year's ethnic studies mandate. 

Democratic Governor Gavin Newson signed the bill on July 16. Its multi-million-dollar appropriation for "anti-racist" activities adds provides the resources necessary to enforce the requirement that undergraduate students take an ethnic studies course. 

In August 2020, Newsom signed Assembly Bill 1460, which makes one course in ethnic studies a graduation requirement for all baccalaureate candidates at a California state-funded colleges.

[RELATED: No diploma for CA students not versed in 'ethnic studies']

"Commencing with students graduating in the 2024–25 academic year, the California State University shall require, as an undergraduate graduation requirement, the completion of, at minimum, one three-unit course in ethnic studies," the 2020 bill states.

California state universities are working with the California State University Council on Ethnic Studies and Academic Senate of the California State University to develop the “core competencies” that will be met by students taking ethnic studies courses.

[RELATED: Updated CSU course requirement replaces focus on 'global awareness' with 'equity and inclusion']

The California State University Council on Ethnic Studies is a self-described council focused on being a “Collaborative forum for addressing the varied needs on each campus – both those with fully established departments as well as those in the process of developing new ethnic studies programs and curricula.”

The California State University Council on Ethnic Studies or the Academic Senate of the California State University did not respond to requests for comment from Campus Reform.