In 2009, in schools across the country, Sikhism was almost never included when students learned about religion.
Today, that is changing in New Jersey, Texas, New York, California, Idaho, Tennessee, Colorado, Arizona, Oklahoma, Michigan, and North Dakota because of a multi-year investment in an advocacy campaign made by the Sikh Coalition in partnership with local sangats.
The Sikh Coalition is currently expanding this campaign to achieve full coverage throughout the United States.
States across the country have their own set of standards that guide teachers in how they develop their curriculum. Each state has a very different timeline as well as has a very different approach to how they review standards and what stakeholders are involved. Therefore our advocacy campaign in each state must vary. This research project will assess currents state, standards, review processes and timelines in order to create a strategy to pursue including Sikhism in states that are currently in review and are strategically important for national impact.
In 2019 alone, we are excited to share that Oklahoma, Michigan and North Dakota have added Sikhism to their social studies standards. This is the first time Sikhism has been included in any of these state standards.
As we continue to push for Sikhism to be included in state standards, we recognized the need to have updated lesson plans, resources, and readings lists that are state-specific and are easy for educators to use in their classrooms. In order to expand our education work, at the beginning of 2018, Dr. Pritpal Kaur joined the Sikh Coalition as Education Director. Pritpal has PhD in Sikh Studies and vast experience creating lessons plans for K-12. Through this staff addition, we have a more holistic approach where we are not only ensuring Sikhism is included but can also take lead on creating teacher-friendly and inclusive content.
WHY THIS MATTERS:
It is simple. We want to make sure that not only is Sikhism included, but it is accurately represented.
This project requires at least $20,000 to help cover some staff time and travel and printing costs for resource material.
HOW YOUR SUPPORT WILL HELP:
We need every Sikh to support this project so that as future generations learn about different religions, they also learn about Sikhism. Your support will ensure that future generations of Sikhs will be appreciated and no longer bullied at school.