For Immediate Release
Interfaith Alliance Supports House Resolution on Texas School Board’s Flawed Curriculum
WASHINGTON - Interfaith Alliance, along with its coalition partners, sent a letter
to Texas Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson endorsing legislation
that she recently introduced, H. Res 1539, which declares Congressional
support for academically based social studies curriculum standards for
national textbooks. This is in response to recent curriculum shifts made
by the Texas State Board of Education. Interfaith Alliance President
Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy issued the following statement:
I urge Congress to pass H. Res. 1539 and lend its weight to countering
the Texas State Board of Education's disturbing efforts to rewrite
American history. The nation needs for Congress to send a loud and clear
message that the history we teach our children should be based on
facts, not on ideology.
For months, revisionists in Texas have fought to modify public school
curriculum to downplay the darker parts of American history and to
undermine the constitutionally mandated boundaries between institutions
of religion and government. Such changes are outside the mainstream of
historic scholarship and counterproductive to religion and democracy.
This matter is not simply a state or local one confined to Texas. These
revisions pose a frightening potential to set into motion damaging and
far-reaching, national initiatives. As a major consumer of textbooks,
the curriculum in books needed for Texas public schools wields
substantial influence on the books publishers create to be used in
classes across the country. When a small group of politicians can revise
a curriculum to obscure the history taught in classrooms around the
country, nothing less than the education and future of all our
nation's children' are at stake.
Our children deserve the best, most accurate educational resources
possible, resources that reflect carefully-researched history, not
politically-motivated ideology. School children should not be duped by
efforts to teach narrow-minded opinions as trusted historical facts.
Only then can they receive the best education possible. Surely, most
Americans agree that integral to quality education is instruction on the
true meaning of the First Amendment and high praise for the religious
freedom we hold dear - our first freedom that has contributed to our
Other signatories to the letter included: American Federation of
Teachers, Americans for Religious Liberty, American Association of
University Women, Americans United for Separation of Church and State,
Anti-Defamation League, Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty,
Catholics for Choice, Center for Inquiry, Hindu American Foundation,
Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, National Alliance of Black
School Educators, NAACP, National Association of Secondary School
Principals, National Council of La Raza, National Council of Jewish
Women, National Education Association, National Women's Law Center,
People For the American Way, Secular Coalition for America, Texas Faith
Network, Texas Freedom Network and the United Church of Christ Justice
& Witness Ministries.
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The Interfaith Alliance celebrates religious freedom by championing individual rights, promoting policies that protect both religion and democracy, and uniting diverse voices to challenge extremism. Founded in 1994, the Interfaith Alliance has 185,000 members across the country from 75 faith traditions as well as those without a faith tradition. For more information visit www.interfaithalliance.org.