Pledge to Teach the Truth


This is the list of people who have signed the pledge or petition to date.

Darcy Bluhm , MI
We have a duty to teach the truth about our country's history - one which gives voice to all those who make up our population and accurately depicts all of its flaws and strengths. We are to teach students to think critically and let them know this country is a work in progress. We are still aspiring to our ideals and still have a long way to go. We can't get there if we are not being honest about how we've created our current conditions and fully grapple with it.
Edwin Ellis | Stone Mountain, GA
I cannot stand by and watch the state of GA strip his teachers of the right to teach truth in their classrooms each day. The only way to prevent history from repeating itself is to teach it as it occurred!
Erica Trebelhorn | Northfield, MN
Children deserve to understand history from all sides, to learn to ask questions, and to make conclusions that have meaning and substance.
Abby Whetzel | Amarillo, TX
Book banning is harming our kids education! We need are violating the first amendment by taking away books! Valuable books, might I add, that are crucial to help shape identities and beliefs.
Kimber Burrows , WA
Rome Puente | Albuquerque, NM
It’s important for everyone to have access to all books!
Kylie Budddin | Iowa City, IA
none of us are free until we are all free.
Katherine Combs | Edmonds, WA
Heather Wyatt-Nichol | Baltimore, MD
Truth matters
Ben Dietz | Providence
I became a teacher to empower young people in my community. Truly empowering students is only possible through compassionate engagement with truths about our history, our environment, and the voices of our community.
Kristen Peck
I became a teacher to help empower young people to create a better world, which can only happen through understanding the TRUE complexities of our past and present world.
Gwendolyn Russell Green | Lithonia, GA
Honest education is critical. Hiding and or sanitizing American History is dishonest and harmful to the goal of creating a well educated populace.
C WHITE | Snellville, GA
STEAM Education for Global Competency can only be achieved if everyone is at the 'table'.If it is not working for everyone, than it is not working..!!
Lake Best | Nashville, TN
I believe students deserve to learn all of history. The good, bad and down right ugly. Let them decide how it makes them feel, more importantly let’s hope teaching the truth inspires some action.
Nora Lester Murad | Auburndale, MA
Michael Burnham | Cincinnati, OH
because there’s no way sacred dream in this Langston Hughes poem can ever find its way into real life if we don’t always teach the truth: Let America be America again.Let it be the dream it used to be.Let it be the pioneer on the plainSeeking a home where he himself is free.(America never was America to me.)Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed—Let it be that great strong land of loveWhere never kings connive nor tyrants schemeThat any man be crushed by one above.(It never was America to me.)O, let my land be a land where LibertyIs crowned with no false patriotic wreath,But opportunity is real, and life is free,Equality is in the air we breathe.(There’s never been equality for me,Nor freedom in this “homeland of the free.”)Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark?And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart,I am the Negro bearing slavery’s scars.I am the red man driven from the land,I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek—And finding only the same old stupid planOf dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak.I am the young man, full of strength and hope,Tangled in that ancient endless chainOf profit, power, gain, of grab the land!Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need!Of work the men! Of take the pay!Of owning everything for one’s own greed!I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil.I am the worker sold to the machine.I am the Negro, servant to you all.I am the people, humble, hungry, mean—Hungry yet today despite the dream.Beaten yet today—O, Pioneers!I am the man who never got ahead,The poorest worker bartered through the years.Yet I’m the one who dreamt our basic dreamIn the Old World while still a serf of kings,Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true,That even yet its mighty daring singsIn every brick and stone, in every furrow turnedThat’s made America the land it has become.O, I’m the man who sailed those early seasIn search of what I meant to be my home—For I’m the one who left dark Ireland’s shore,And Poland’s plain, and England’s grassy lea,And torn from Black Africa’s strand I cameTo build a “homeland of the free.”The free?Who said the free? Not me?Surely not me? The millions on relief today?The millions shot down when we strike?The millions who have nothing for our pay?For all the dreams we’ve dreamedAnd all the songs we’ve sungAnd all the hopes we’ve heldAnd all the flags we’ve hung,The millions who have nothing for our pay—Except the dream that’s almost dead today.O, let America be America again—The land that never has been yet—And yet must be—the land where every man is free.The land that’s mine—the poor man’s, Indian’s, Negro’s, ME—Who made America,Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain,Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain,Must bring back our mighty dream again.Sure, call me any ugly name you choose—The steel of freedom does not stain.From those who live like leeches on the people’s lives,We must take back our land again,America!O, yes,I say it plain,America never was America to me,And yet I swear this oath—America will be!Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death,The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies,We, the people, must redeemThe land, the mines, the plants, the rivers.The mountains and the endless plain—All, all the stretch of these great green states—And make America again!
Julie Rinker | Dallas, TX
I believe students deserve access to a truthful telling of history.
Caroline Steinhauser | Tucker, GA
Eva Becerra | Decatur, GA
Marcella Simadiris , NJ
History is our best teacher
Caryn Davidson | New York, NY
I am fully committed to teaching the truth as part of a broader school and BLM at NYC Schools network that is collectively committed as well.
Linda Johnson , NC
I believe history should be taught as it was in its entirety, removing or eliminating anything.
Shankara Getchonis | Las Vegas, NV
I believe truth is integral to fostering autonomy, compassion, radical love, and radical care in students. Understanding one's place in the world sometimes comes with understanding the history of the place in which we currently live. Shifting the focus from individualized to community lead comes with having uncomfortable yet honest conversations with one another, rooted in love and care, where there is always a soft place to land, free from judgement, and there is always room for learning and growth. I refuse to censor history, I will not lie to my students, I will always teach the truth.
Andrew Cho | Phoenix, AZ
My state is eliminating SEL on the grounds that racial equity should not be taught. I refuse to hold back information, skills, and experiences that will empower my students to succeed in a world where so many oppressions exist against them.

Selected Pledges

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6 comments on “Pledge to Teach the Truth

  1. Maribeth Jaeske on

    As an educator who is serious about teaching the truth I will not be bullied into silence. I will do my part in the fight for equity and equality by making sure my students are most equipped to fight this ugliness in the real world.

  2. Marianne Golding on

    Yes, the truth of American history needs to be taught, but also its impact on the rest of the world, such as its role in WWII. I just finished teaching a college-level course on the Holocaust, and could not believe how little the students knew about the rest of the world’s participation in the war! They seemed to believe that WWII was ended by the US alone!

  3. Alexander Hines on

    “When you begin to do things that raise the achievement of the poorest and disenfranchised students, you may not always get applause. You need to be ready for that.” Dr. Asa Hilliard

    “Resistance is a powerful motivator precisely because it enables us to fulfill our longing to achieve our goals while letting us boldly recognize and name the obstacles to those achievements.”
    Dr. Derrick Bell

  4. Deborah Millikan on

    Our young people deserve the truth and it is our kuleana (responsibility) to give space and opportunity for the truth and the difficult conversations.

  5. Bill Ivey on

    Social justice is a major theme of my Humanities 7 course, and my school uses Dr. Gholdy Muhammad’s HILL framework (development of identity, skills, knowledge, Criticality) to frame our entire curriculum. Student agency through research work and essay writing, and action-oriented civic engagement work, define what we “cover” in my course.

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