From NBC 4 Washington:
Three social studies teachers at a D.C. public charter school were fired for teaching black history lessons beyond what’s in the curriculum, students’ parents told News4.
“It’s about the history of who we are and where we came from,” said Michelle Payne, whose son is in the eighth grade at Howard University Middle School of Math and Science.
Parents say it is unacceptable for a school located on the campus of a historically black university to stifle African-American history lessons.
As a graduate of Howard University, I find this highly offensive. I’ve frequented Howard Middle as well as tutored some students who attended the school. This reminds me of Arizona’s law banning Mexican-American studies. The act in itself is a violent one.
Historical revisionism is a HUGE problem. It was then, and it IS now. What is there to gain from denying someone access to their history? The answer is simple: When you deny someone their history, they are dependent upon YOU to tell their stories. They begin to believe that their history, their existence is small and unimportant, narrowly defined.
In this case, I am floored and a little confused about what Howard Middle School principal Angelique Blackmon has to gain by being such a complete fool. According to reports, students told their parents that the teachers were fired right in front of them…which makes the story ten times worse.
From WJLA ABC 7:
“They were all escorted out by police officers, because they were trying to teach us things about our African heritage,” said seventh-grade student Kameron Gains-Gillens.
Parents who met with Principal Blackmon about this issue have expressed being unsatisfied with their meetings. Though Blackmon has met with parents, she has yet to respond to media attempts to contact her.
Howard Middle School Principal, Angelique Blackmon
Apparently, Blackmon didn’t want teachers talking about things like Kwanzaa and the late Marion Barry, affectionately known by DC Residents as “Mayor for Life.”
Angelique Blackmon should be ashamed of herself. What a sell out.
Although nothing about this is good, there is one thing that makes me very proud:
This generation is learning what it means to stand up for what is right. They are learning what it means to protest. They are learning what it means to stand tall and stand together in times of oppression. They are taking lessons from the images they’ve been seeing. They are being proactive, and they are asking the hard questions.
Bravo Howard Middle School students! You are OUR future!
Images posted Online from the Protests Taking Place NOW! #MS2Protest