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Contact: Bill Straus, Arizona ADL Regional Director: 602-274-0991

ADL Defends “Ethnic Studies” Program Targeted by New Law

Phoenix, AZ, May 14, 2010 .... The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today defended the Tucson Unified
School District’s ethnic studies program for Latino students against the new law (HB 2281) intended to
eliminate it, and reiterated the District’s sentiment that nothing in the program violates the new law.

Arizona Regional Board Chair Miriam Weisman and Regional Director Bill Straus issued the following

“ADL has been looking into this issue for over a year. We have heard from both Dr. Augustine Romero,
who created and oversees the program, and Superintendent of Education Tom Horne, each of whom
addressed both ADL’s Regional Education Committee and Regional Board. Additionally, we had
education professionals spend a day in Tucson observing the program in action. After examining both
sides of this more thoroughly than the Department of Education and the Legislature COMBINED, we
concluded that the program does exactly what it was designed to do, provide Latino students a link to the
learning process, a process from which many previously felt alienated. Incorporating students’ race or
culture into the learning process should be encouraged, not prohibited. We further concluded that the
program was not guilty of the most heinous allegations that have been leveled against it, something the
Department of Education and Legislature would have discovered had they done their homework.”

The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-
Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.

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