Black History Month is an opportunity for education and celebration of Black American history and culture. Here in the Public Schools or the Tarrytowns, our students are learning about and honoring historical and modern-day Black scholars, activists, musicians, scientists, mathematicians, leaders, and more.
Assistant Superintendent for Administration and Instruction Dr. Gail Duffy says that it is important to, specifically and with intention, celebrate Black History Month. “Our District Equity Team (DET) is working hard to analyze and enhance the curriculum in our schools to ensure that we are teaching about all types of people and cultures that have been important to American history,” said Dr. Duffy. “At the same time, we believe that we must focus this month on discussing and honoring those in the Black community who have impacted our culture, past and present.”
The origin of Black History Month is Negro History Week, created in the United States in February, 1926. The event celebrated the birthdays of both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. Fifty years later, the celebration was expanded to a month and coincided with the nation's bicentennial. President Ford urged Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”
In its recent monthly meeting the DET discussed Black History Month and spent time learning about a variety of Black individuals who have had or are currently having an impact on major institutions and industries including medicine, education and literature/publishing. For those interested in researching these people, they are: Dena Simmons; Yaa Gyasi; Uche Blackstock; Gholdy Muhammad; Amanda Gorman; Mathhew Kay; Monique Morris; and Shaun Harper. Faculty members will be bringing these lessons to their classrooms in the coming weeks.
Please look for additional posts on Black History Month throughout February.