As the Texas State Board of Education began to consider revisions to the Science Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) in 2020, IDRA submitted a letter urging inclusion of the scientific achievements of women and people of color – groups that are conspicuously and shamefully absent from the current standards. We also urge the board to confront social justice issues head-on – name them clearly, identify the scientists and scientific theories that have addressed or exacerbated injustices, and help students see science as a way to solve persistent social and systemic inequities. See article, Every Scientist Named in the Texas Science Standards is a White Male – IDRA Recommends Accurate Inclusion of Scientific History.

“A critical part of preparing students for success is teaching curricula that accurately portray the contributions of the diverse individuals and communities that are part of our collective story.”

– Dr. Stephanie Garcia, IDRA

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Note, the new TEKS adopted in 2021 do include more diverse individuals, particularly for elementary students. The TEKS for elementary grades, the following names are included: Katherine Johnson, Sally Ride, Ernest Just, Isaac Newton, Mae Jemison, Ynes Mexia, Alexander Graham Bell, Marie Daly, Mario Molina and Jane Goodall. The TEKS for high school grades, the following names are included: Ptolemy, Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Kepler, Galileo, Newton, Einstein, Hubble, Maria Mitchell and Henrietta Swan Leavitt.