GHC needs more cultural studies class

By Sora Park

As I stand amidst the crowd representing one of the 14 other cultural clubs on campus, I see myself not only advertising for representation of my culture, but for cultural diversity in general, something I believe is abundant within our student body but limited in our academic courses.

When I first entered my AP World History class, I was eager to finally catch a glimpse of my cultural history. That is, until I realized “World History” meant a vague overview of Germany, Russia, Brazil, China, and India.

This made me question when I and other students at Granada Hills Charter High School (GHC) would have the opportunity to specifically learn more about our cultural heritage. With a campus that thrives on diversity, why do we lack variety within our courses? And, when will we finally have the option of cultural studies?

It wasn’t until my junior year, when I joined International Baccalaureate (IB), that I received what I came for.

Indulged in a curriculum that is catered towards a global perspective, IB English classes branched beyond American authors and the two year history course allowed for depth in the countries we learned about.

In fact, the most accented novels we read came from translated Russian and Japanese pieces. Moreover, through the diversity presented within our curriculum, we were inspired to acknowledge more global issues.

From this, numerous community service projects have been created, some of them tackling diversity appreciation.

But was my admission into IB necessary for me to finally gain a broadened perspective? Shouldn’t GHC take the initiative to provide more cultural studies courses and an opportunity for all students to grow?

Currently, there is only one cultural and ethnic studies course: Diversity in America. Taught and led by English teacher Shayna Arrhanian, this class has an objective to spark conversation about the vast diversity in America and teach others how to remain cognizant of the various issues and struggles we face as a nation. And, with the success that this single class has received, it is evident that there is room for more on this campus.

Undeniably, GHC is a school filled with opportunities to grow as a student. With over 38 IB courses and 29 AP courses available, there are plenty of courses that students can utilize to learn and test their knowledge in.

But despite coming in as Niche’s fifth most diverse charter high school in the nation, GHC has yet to recognize the precious diversity it has on campus with cultural studies courses.
It’s time for growth, GHC. And, considering that the Diversity in America course has been doing incredibly well, the addition of more courses may not be as difficult as it may seem.

With the installation of cultural studies courses as an added option to freshman year electives, or simply by adding global literary pieces to English classrooms, we’ll finally be able to see variety within our academics.
I’m eager to see change, GHC.

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