Gay History Now Mandatory in California Schools
Governor signs law requiring lessons in LGBT accomplishments
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 15, 2011 7:45 AM CDT
California Gov. Jerry Brown signed the controversial measure into law.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Gay rights supporters are hailing this as a big win in California: Public schools will be required to teach the accomplishments of gay Americans under a measure signed into law yesterday by Gov. Jerry Brown, reports the Los Angeles Times. The San Francisco Chronicle says it's the first such law in the nation and notes that it could have an effect well beyond the state: National textbook publishers will likely revise their books to make sure they don't miss out on the lucrative California market.

"History should be honest," said Brown. "This bill revises existing laws that prohibit discrimination in education and ensures that the important contributions of Americans from all backgrounds and walks of life are included in our history books." The debate over the measure had been volatile, with opponents such as the Traditional Values Coalition calling it "absurd and offensive." Proponents say it will give gay teens role models and cut down on bullying.