Mexican-American studies

Texas Education Board Approves Course Formerly Known As Mexican-American Studies

Apr 13, 2018
Laura Skelding

* Update, April 13: On Friday, the State Board of Education gave its final approval to development of the Ethnic Studies: An Overview of Americans of Mexican Descent course. 

Texas advocates for Mexican-American studies classes won a bitter victory Wednesday, gaining approval to move forward with the class they wanted but losing the course title.

Marlon Lizama

Despite a strong Hispanic presence, not much Mexican-American history is being taught in public schools along the border — that is, until now.  

  • On this episode of Fronteras, students in El Paso are learning more about a previously unknown chapter of history (0:17).
  • Also on this episode, a SpaceX facility in Brownsville has yet to be completed but residents there are worried if the company’s promises of a launch facility will go unfulfilled (5:34).
  • And finally, Houston poet and performer Marley Lizama talks about how his mother’s unconventional punishments led him to poetry, and how hip hop helped him find his voice (10:57).


Lance Ozier at Todos Juntos Photography/Courtesy Opera Southwest

Rudolfo Anaya's coming-of-age novel "Bless Me, Última" is one of the most influential works in Chicano literary canon. 


Melissa Reyna, from left; Sylvia Garcia; Luis Silva; Priscilla Garza; Jarin Huspeth; Kimberly Moreno; Sabrina Cordova; and Andres Lopez.
File Photo | Norma Martinez / Texas Public Radio

Despite a call for immediate action from at least two board members during January’s board meeting, the Texas State Board of Education stuck to its agenda and made no decisions in a yearslong push to expand access to Mexican-American studies courses in Texas high schools.

Laila Kazmi /KCTS-TV 9

This week on Fronteras:

  • Now that temporary protected status for people in the U.S. from El Salvador has ended, hear how workers in Houston are dealing with the uncertainty.
  • Property taxes of adobe homes in Marfa skyrocket (3:50).
  • Muslim Americans honor Martin Luther King Jr. with a day of service (7:59).
  • A Latina conductor strikes a chord in Seattle (11:40).
  • Mexican-American studies touch the lives of San Antonio students (16:49).


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