Illinois bill would require more diverse reading curriculum for K-12 students

State Rep. La Shawn Ford is making an effort to update Illinois school curriculum and require that students in kindergarten through 12th grade to be exposed to literature from diverse backgrounds.

House Bill 2401 would require school districts to make sure that this literature would be a part of reading assignments or courses including authors who have diverse backgrounds and cultures.

"Now more than ever, it’s critical that we uplift educational standards that represent and positively reflect the rich diversity of our state," Ford said in a statement. "Reading assignments are a core component of a child’s upbringing and can shape who they are. It’s important that they are exposed to a diverse offering of assignments that allow them to hear and understand unique perspectives both like and unlike their own."


Ford's bill was inspired by twins Phallon and Kyra Pierce who raised concerns about their 8th grade summer reading assignment, which included a "racist themed book."