Bill Urges Schools to Teach Racial Import of Obama Election

California lawmakers say students should learn what President Obama’s election meant for racial equality and civil rights.

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President Barack Obama speaks during a visit to Bladensburg High School April 7, 2014 in Bladensburg, Maryland

Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Saying that Barack Obama’s election marked a "historic step in the effort towards equality in the United States," California lawmakers last week passed a bill to encourage schools to teach students about the racial significance of his presidency, the Associated Press reports.

The California Assembly, with unanimous bipartisan support, passed the measure Thursday. It now heads to the state Senate, the report says.

The bill, sponsored by Assemblyman Chris Holden, D-Pasadena, asks state education officials to include President Obama’s election in history and social studies standards by mapping out a blueprint of what students are expected to learn, the news site says.

Lessons about President Obama should highlight what his election meant for racial equality and civil rights, Holden said on the Assembly floor, the AP reports. He said that Obama’s historic first-term election in 2008 "should not just be a mere footnote within textbooks, but rather focus on the significance of Americans overcoming our nation’s past and acknowledging that Americans are moving in the right direction."

The state Board of Education is scheduled to update academic standards during the 2015-16 school year and is not required to follow the Assembly’s recommendations, the report says. If passed, textbooks would likely be updated after Obama leaves office.

Read more at CBS Sacramento.

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