Dr. Angelica K. Chavez is currently the Coordinator of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Humanities for the Simi Valley Unified School District. One of her main job descriptions is to oversee the implementation of civics education throughout the district. She also supports Pk-12 history teachers by providing professional development, resources and support as needed. She is a former Assistant Principal and a former history teacher. She was a high school history teacher for 15 years. During that time, she taught a variety of class from college prep to advanced placement courses. Dr. Chavez has also worked on developing the curriculum for AP World History and Ethnic Studies for her previous school district. She earned her bachelor of arts from UCSB in 2003, teaching credential and masters in education from Azusa Pacific University in 2007, her doctorate in Educational Leadership from California Lutheran University in 2014 and a second masters in Legal Studies from Pepperdine University in 2019. She is truly a lifelong learner. In addition to her work, she is a proud wife and mother of three children.
I strongly believe that in order to realize the Constitutional ideals of "liberty and justice for all" students must be engaged in civic education so they know their rights and civic responsibilities. Students want to learn how to engage with historical curriculum by making the content current. Students want to learn how to make meaningful contribution to their communities. As educators and educational leaders, it is our responsibility to ensure that students have access to a wide range of opportunities to participate in civic action. Now more than ever students need to be empowered with the ability to engage in civil discourse in a reasonable and logical manner that is supported by facts. Too often students either refuse to engage or engage in an inefficient manner. Teachers also need to be empowered. At a time, when our history teachers are under constant attack, they need to be reassured that we need them to teach a well balanced, neutral curriculum that is diverse and allows students to analyze tough history. Teachers should not shy away from controversial topics but should present topics in neutral ways that allow students to analyze and reach their own conclusions. We are not in the business of telling students what to think. We are in the business of teaching critical thinking and writing skills as applied to historical events.