The bill would encourage schools to commemorate Harvey Milk Day on May 22nd with discussions and other exercises.
Milk was an openly gay member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.
He and San Francisco Mayor George Moscone were assassinated by Supervisor Dan White in 1978.
One member of the board of education complained that the state bill offered little guidance, and no funding for any Milk observances.
Another board member said public tax money should not be used to promote a politically controversial lifestyle.
Orange County Register contributed to this report.