(WREX/CNN) — When schools return to session, there will be a new part of the curriculum for students.
Starting Wednesday, July 1, contributions of LGBTQ people will be taught in public schools in Illinois.
Governor JB Pritzker signed the legislation in August of 2019.
Equality Illinois, the state’s largest LGBTQ civil rights advocacy organization, supported the bill and said the curriculum can have a “positive effect on students’ self-image and make their peers more accepting.”
The organization said some topics that will be added to the new curriculum include the nation’s first gay rights organization, the Society for Human Rights, being formed in 1924 in Chicago, and Sally Ride, the first US woman in space, who was a lesbian.
“One of the best ways to overcome intolerance is through education and exposure to different people and viewpoints,” State Sen. Heather Steans, who also sponsored the bill, said in a statement last year. “An inclusive curriculum will not only teach an accurate version of history but also promote acceptance of the LGBTQ community.”