Chicanx History in the Coachella Valley

The Coachella Valley has a rich history, filled with the experience of Chicanx students and workers organizing and advocating for their rights to education and fair labor. The Coachella Valley played host to numerous union conflicts regarding labor and education in the 1970s, long before the name of this desert landscape became linked to an overrated music festival.  
Garcia’s research details Chicanx student walkouts in the Coachella Valley and the participation of several teachers and administrators. Two teachers, Socorro Gomez-Potter and Yolanda Almaraz Esquivel lead the charge in advocating for bilingual education and the rights of Chicanx students. Garcia created profiles for these two based off interviews he conducted, and once posted online on Brown University’s website, a response he held onto demonstrated how contentious the issues were for those who lived through the movement.  
Garica kept an email from someone who claimed there was incorrect information on Brown’s website regarding the details of student abuse by a certain teacher, which sparked the decision for the students to engage in walkouts. The email comes off as hastily written, claiming they were an “Anglo teacher” in the district during the time of the walkouts. They write, “You need to tell both sides of the story, before others do.” Significantly, and perhaps ironically, the underrepresented and marginalized experience of Chicanx students and teachers is exactly what Garcia was researching for his book. Unknown to the individual who wrote the email, the second side of the story was on its way in the form of his next book.   
I’d like to include details of these profiles, the walkouts, and the oral histories next week. I’ll also write regarding details of oral history research Garcia conducted on UFW members as well.