Tulalip senator explains passage of bill mandating public schools to teach tribal curriculum
OMAK — The author behind a senate bill mandating Washington’s public schools to teach a curriculum incorporating the 29 federally-recognized tribes of the state lacked satisfaction from a similar bill that saw a low turnout after a decade of implementation.
Sen. John McCoy, D-Tulalip, estimated just 30 percent of school districts participated in incorporating “Since Time Immemorial: Tribal Sovereignty in Washington State” since 2005 because it was only dubbed as “encouraged” by HB 1495, which he introduced.
“In tribal history and culture, there’s a saying, that if you don’t teach history you’re doomed to repeat it,” McCoy said during a Tribal Leaders Congress on Education meeting here at 12 Tribes Casino on Aug. 13. “So we must teach history—the good, the bad, the ugly—so that everybody understands how Indians were treated during the early European contact.”