Black History Month: How We Celebrate
Black History Month in Columbia Public Schools
Columbia Public Schools works to focus teaching of Black History all year. However, we take the opportunity each February to use Black History Month to highlight notable figures and moments in Black history. (Joy Bess, Coordinator for 9-12 Language Arts and Social Studies)
There is rarely a grade level in which African American History isn’t taught, but not necessarily in a “stand alone” way rather as an integral part of the larger story being told. No matter the grade level or curriculum focus, CPS articulates a scope and sequence that focuses on identity and “continuity and change” over time, in grades K-12. This allows students to explore the history of indigenous peoples and the importance and significance of diversity and the changes/effects (including negative) that are outcomes of power distribution, colonialism, imperialism, etc.
Columbia Public Schools recognizes that our local history is important to understanding who we are as a community. Information on historical Black local leaders, places and events have been shared with teachers throughout the district to help inform their teaching. We proudly highlight some of those individuals who have helped shape our community.
Leaders you Should Know: Individuals not frequently referenced, but who have made outstanding contributions to our society.
You may know pioneers in Black history such as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, or Muhammad Ali, but do you know Dr. Percy Lavon Julian, Gwendolyn Brooks or Dorothy Height?
The book and movie Hidden Figures drew attention to the fact that many significant achievements have occurred throughout history by people who were not recognized. During Black History Month, we would like to recognize a person each day who made outstanding contributions to our society. We would like to bring some of these hidden figures out of the shadow of history and into the light.