‘Our History is Deeper Than What They Tell Us’: A New Book by Young Authors from SFUSD in Partnership with 826 Valencia


SFUSD is celebrating the release of a new book called Our History is Deeper Than What They Tell Us, which was released earlier this month as this year’s Young Authors’ Book Project (YABP) by 826 Valencia. The book features contributions by students from Willie Brown Middle School, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Academic Middle School, Civic Center Secondary School, and Mission High School, and speaks on the Black identity and experience. Students received a small stipend for their contributions to the book.

SFUSD has had a long-standing partnership with 826 Valencia. They have dedicated Writers’ Rooms at Buena Vista Horace Mann K-8, Everett Middle School, and Mission High School where volunteers assist students with various writing projects such as personal statements for college applications. 826 Valencia decided to add a cultural focus to their work and designed and developed the Black Literacy Academic Club (B.L.A.C.) in 2020. The vision and mission of B.L.A.C. is led by Precediha Dangerfield, a 826 Valencia Educational Program Manager. Many of the students featured in the book are part of B.L.A.C. High school students participating in the club mentor middle school students with their writing. B.L.A.C. worked with students prior to the launch of the Mastering Cultural Identity course at Willie Brown and MLK.

You can purchase the book on 826 Valencia’s website.

Linda Martley-Jordan, Post Secondary Pathways Manager from SFUSD’s African American Achievement and Leadership Initiative (AAALI) shares some words and appreciations at the Our History is Deeper Than What They Tell Us book launch event.

A student author from Willie Brown Middle School reads from Our History is Deeper Than What They Tell Us at the book launch event, and he is accompanied by his teacher from the Mastering Cultural Identity class.

Listen to and watch a few students read from their poems/essays published in the book.
Songia Goodwin, 12th grader at Mission High, reads from “Asé”
Jordan Nickelson-Smith, 12th grader at Mission High, reads from “Education is Key”
Samantha Wint from Balboa High reads from “The Masterpiece”