FREMONT, Calif. (Diya TV) — The Fremont Unified School District (FUSD) School Board has voted overwhelmingly in favor of introducing Hindi as a world language into its curriculum, making it the first public school district in California to offer Hindi as part of its educational offerings.

The FUSD School Board voted 4 to 1 to launch a pilot program that will see Hindi in the curriculum of Horner Middle School and Irvington High School for the 2024-2025 school year. The decision has been met with great enthusiasm and support from the Indian-American community, which makes up nearly 65% of the student population in these two schools.

The battle to include Hindi in the FUSD curriculum started almost two decades ago, with the Indian-American community advocating for cultural representation and a more inclusive education. Despite previous efforts, FUSD had adopted Mandarin in two schools and offered multiple other languages, but had not considered Hindi until now.

The decision to introduce Hindi as an optional subject was welcomed by Indian Americans in Fremont, which has one of the highest concentrations of the community in California. \

During the meeting, FUSD board members Vivek Prasad, Sharon Coco, Larry Sweeney, and President Yajing Zhang showed strong support for the proposal, citing the welfare of students as a major factor in their decision.

“I look at the demand, and I look at the value that this Hindi offering will produce for the community … for me it’s a no-brainer,” said Trustee Vivek Prasad, endorsing the pilot.

“If this is successful and if other schools want to offer Hindi, they will be able to in the future… so at this moment in time I’m in favor,” was the response of Trustee Sharon Coco, highlighting her commitment to the student community of FUSD.

“I’m positive that it (pilot) will go to all high schools and all middle schools, and they will embrace it,” stated Trustee Larry Sweeney in support of the proposal.

“Who do we serve?” asked President Yajing Zhang, “Students! And so do we serve the students’ interest if there is a huge evident demand for this class?”.