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California Schools Curriculum to Include Sikh Information
Budget Crisis May Delay New Textbooks

By Anju Kaur, SikhNN staff writer, Washington Bureau
Posted: Friday, September 28, 2012 | 01:12 pm

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California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law on Sept. 8 an education bill to finish a framework for schools that would include teaching about the religion, history and culture of its Sikh immigrants. Right: Onkar Singh Bindra, the "driving force" behind the legislation. Photo: Karaminder Ghuman, courtesy The Sikh Coalition.

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Photo Source: See Below

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law on Sept. 8 an education bill to finish a framework for schools that would include teaching about the religion, history and culture of its Sikh immigrants. Right: Onkar Singh Bindra, the "driving force" behind the legislation, and Simran Kaur of the Sikh Coalition. Photo courtesy: punjabmailusa.com.

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California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law on Sept. 8 an education bill to finish a framework for schools that would include teaching about the religion, history and culture of its Sikh immigrants. Photo courtesy: Office of California Sen. Loni Hancock.

>> Launch Gallery

SIKHS IN THE FRAMEWORK

According to the elementary school curriculum, fourth-grade students will be taught about California’s cultures, from the Native Americans to modern-day immigrants, including “the Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, Sikhs, and other immigrants of the second half of the nineteenth century, who provided a new supply of labor for California’s railroads, agriculture, and industry and contributed as entrepreneurs and innovators, especially in agriculture…

“They (also) learn about the contributions of immigrants to California and United States history, such as Dalip Singh Saund, a Sikh immigrant who was the first Asian American to serve in the United States Congress.”

According to the middle-school curriculum, seventh grade students will be taught that the “conversion (of Islam) slowed in India with the emergence of Sikhism in 1469.”

They also will learn that “in South Asia, Sikhism arose as a new religion founded by Guru Nanak, a social reformer who challenged the authority of the Brahmin and the power of the Mughal Empire. Students may learn about the Sikh Scripture (Guru Granth Sahib), articles of faith, turban, and Sikh history. The three basic principles of Sikhism are honest living, sharing with the needy, and praying to the same and one God.”

Eight-grade students will learn that “the Gold Rush in California and agricultural labor in Hawaii spurred Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Filipino, Hindu, and Sikh immigration to the United States.”

According to the high-school curriculum, ninth-grade students will learn about “Sikhism – articles of faith, wearing of the turban, Guru Nanak Dev, strict monotheism, brotherhood and equality of humanity, rejection of idol worship and the caste system, the Sri Guru Granth, and the Dasam Granth.”

Tenth-grade students will learn that “print technology and more rapid transportation aided the growth of Protestantism, Catholicism, Islam, Sikhism, and Buddhism.”






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