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Texas BOE Ducks Mexican-American Studies Vote

(credit: CBS 11 News)

(credit: CBS 11 News)

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The Texas Board of Education has bypassed voting on a hotly debated proposal to create a statewide Mexican-Americans studies course as a high school elective.

Instead, members voted 11-3 on Wednesday to ask publishers to submit textbooks for Mexican-American studies and several other classes in different ethnic studies by the 2016-2017 school year.

Proponents of Mexican-American studies declared victory. They said the new books will allow local school districts across Texas to create their own courses more easily.

But opponents on the Republican-controlled board noted that school districts already were allowed to devise their own courses, and that publishers are under no obligation to produce new books.

Texas public schools are 51 percent Hispanic. Though Hispanic history is taught in other, existing classes, activists say they don’t go far enough.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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