In September 1968, Congress authorized President Lyndon B. Johnson to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage Week to recognize the rich culture and contributions of Americans who trace their roots to Spain, Mexico, Central America, South America and Spanish-speaking nations of the Caribbean. Just two decades later, lawmakers expanded the observance to a month long celebration, stretching from September 15 to October 15.
Hispanic Heritage Month – like its shorter precursor – always starts on September 15, a historically significant day that marks the anniversary of independence of five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. The designated period is also a nod to those from Mexico and Chile, which celebrate their independence on September 16 and September 18, respectively.
Today, 57.5 million people or 18 percent of the American population are of Hispanic or Latino origin. This represents a significant increase from the year 2000, which registered the Hispanic population at 35.3 million or 13 percent of the total U.S. population.
IDEA Public Schools is proud to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. As an organization who believes a great education is the pathway to success in college and in life, we champion this month as an opportunity to educate our students about Hispanic heritage and celebrate the rich cultural traditions of Hispanic Americans.
As we kick-off this important month, campuses across our regions are holding events in honor of Hispanic heritage. Be sure to stay tuned to IDEA’s Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages as we document the celebratory happenings occurring across our campuses, share the stories of our Hispanic students, teachers, and leaders, and highlight what our students are learning in their classrooms.
Join our family today, and make sure to take time to celebrate and honor the contributions of Hispanic Americans who have positively influenced our country.