California Educator

August/September 2021

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Y O U T E A C H the truth. at's what educators do. Teaching truth is integral to giv- ing our children and young people the tools to navigate the world and shape the future as adults. e fac- tual history of the United States tells students where we've been, how we got th ere, and w h ere we may b e going. Educators teach about the greatness of our countr y and the times when it has not lived up to the promise of "we the people." In this way, educators help stu- dents learn our shared stories, our diverse and complex history. This includes helping them understand the roots of inequality today, as well as how people have organized and created coalitions across race, class and gender to confront injustice and build a more perfect union. " Te a c h i n g a l l of o u r c h i l d re n — regardless of their race or ZIP code, whether Native or newcomer — means teaching them the truth," SuppoRt HonestY in Education P L E D G E T O #TeachTruth. Demand that our schools have the resources to meet every child's needs with well-trained and supported teachers and a curriculum that helps them reckon with the past and shape our future. Join us by signing the pledge at wrote NEA President Becky Pringle in a recent opinion column. " We can teach about the horrors of slavery, internment and forced resettlement. We can have honest discussions about today 's injus- tices and the threats to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness that still exist for many. We can objectively present to stu d ent s th e go o d , b a d and u g ly of our p ast s o that they can build a bet- ter, brighter future." C TA h a s l o n g a d v o - c a t e d f o r h o n e s t y i n education — specifically, e x p o si n g stu d e n t s t o a culturally comprehensive education through ethnic studies. CTA is currently co-sponsoring AB 101 by Jose Medina (D-Riverside), a bill that would make completion of an ethnic studies course mandatory for high school graduation, starting in the 2025-26 school year. "We have a duty to teach our students about their ancestral legacies and to celebrate them every day," says CTA Pres- ident E. Toby Boyd about AB 101. "Culture is essential in the fight for racial justice and equity." Unfortunat ely, multiple stat es and localities across the country have recently introduced or passed laws to bar teachers from speaking the truth about history and deny students the right to an honest education. This runs counter to fu n d a m ent al e du c ator v alu e s . We mu st c om e t o g e t h e r t o s p e a k o u t a g a i n s t s u c h c e n s o r - s h i p a n d d i s h o n e s t y. The stakes could not be higher : By teaching the tr uth , educators t each integrity in how we treat others and cour- age to do what's right — the foundations of a truly democratic society. Students need honesty and expect the truth from us, their educators. "We can objectively present the good, bad and ugly of our past so students can build a better, brighter future." —NEA President Becky Pringle to Teach the Truth Freedom 35 A U G U S T / S E P T E M B E R 2 0 21 Advocacy

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