Construir Y No Destruir (Build and Do Not Destroy): Tucson Resisting

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Anita Fernández


On the evening of January 12, 2012 the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) school board voted 4-1 to eliminate the highly successful and quantitatively proven Mexican American Studies Program (Cabrera, Milem, Jaquette, & Marx, 2014). Sitting in the school board meeting that evening with my then thirteen year old son, we watched in disbelief as board members stated their reasons for banning a program that had improved graduation rates, increased matriculation to higher education and even improved standardized test scores.

The following week TUSD representatives entered the Mexican American Studies (MAS) classrooms and boxed up the supposed “subversive” and “anti-American” literature that included works by Sandra Cisneros, Rudy Acuña, Luis Alberto Urrea, Ana Castillo and other highly acclaimed Latin@ and Native authors.

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