Activist and educator Sal Castro, a principal organizer and supporter of the 1968 East Los Angeles Walkouts, will address San Diego Mesa College students on Wednesday, November 5, at 9:30 a.m. in Room G-101. The event is free and open to the public.
Castro will address today’s problems in contemporary education and its impact on Latino/Chicano students. He will also show film clips of the walkouts, discuss the conditions in the East Los Angeles High Schools that culminated in the decision to boycott the schools, and answer questions from the audience.
The series of protests in East Los Angeles, known commonly as the 1968 Chicano Blowouts, roiled Southern California in opposition to unequal conditions in Los Angeles-area schools. What began with dissatisfaction in education became a conflagration of issues whipped together in a turbulent time. More than 20,000 students boycotted school for a week in March 1968 in what is considered to be among the events that helped open the doors of higher education for people of color.
Then a local teacher, Castro was among 13 organizers arrested for their roles in the walkouts, although conspiracy charges were dropped. Now retired, Castro continues to lecture about his experiences and the importance of education, especially for Mexican Americans.
In 2006, HBO released the film “Walkout,” which tells the story of Castro and the 1968 East Los Angeles walkouts that protested lack of educational opportunities for Mexican-American students.
The lecture is a presentation of the Chicano/Chicana Studies Department and the San Diego Mesa College Humanities Institute.