Governor Ned Lamont announced in 2020 that Connecticut would become the first state in the nation to require all high schools in the state offer courses on African-American, Black, Puerto Rican, and Latino studies. The courses were optional in 2021 and are now required to be offered. It is important to note that these courses are offered as electives and are not mandatory.
The requirement is the result of a law Governor Lamont signed in 2019 – Public Act 19-12 – that directs all regional and local boards of education to include an elective course of studies at the high school level that provides students with a better understanding of the African-American, Black, Puerto Rican, and Latino contributions to United States history, society, economy, and culture. The Connecticut State Board of Education unanimously approved the curriculum for the course, which was developed in collaboration with the State Education Resource Center.
SERC(State Education Resource Center) is a quasi-public agency established under statute to serve the CT State Board of Education in supporting educational equity and excellence. We do this by providing professional development and information dissemination in the latest research and best practices to educators, service providers, and families throughout the state, as well as job-embedded technical assistance and training within schools, programs, and districts. Formerly known as the Special Education Resource Center, SERC became the State Education Resource Center according to a change in state statutes. The agency continues to maintain the Special Education Resource Center and SERC Library in addition to its broader responsibilities, including the support to programs and activities regarding early childhood education and school improvement.