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Busted Halo
feature : word on ths street
February 22nd, 2007
Word on the Street : Black History Education

Does the fact that there is a Black History month say something about the way in which Black history is covered in the American Education System? If so what and why?

Charmaine, 20
"I don't know if it is necessary for [black history] to have a whole month anymore. I would rather see it more integrated into formal education. I think that because there is a whole month for it, teachers selectively use just that month to teach black history whereas it should be taught all year round. [Black history] is not covered as much as it should be."
Clare, 19
"I don't think there is any problems with it. I mean, I'm sure they can cover it a little more but I go to college and there are special courses just for black history. I've heard people argue, ‘why isn't there white history month?' That's just some people's opinion. I'm on the fence."
Jennifer, 25
"I really don't like the way [black history] is dealt with. I was actually in a black history organization, CtiyTech, and it was dealt with properly then. It wasn't dealt with properly in high school or anything like that."
Juan, 21
"Of course, it says a lot. And at the same time, it demonstrates how much they have accomplished in past years. This is assuring that [the American Education System] does do enough. They are trying to teach people where they come from and what they are about."
Jay, 34
"I think that to separate [black history] does us a disservice. In grade school you are taught that you are inferior to whites. And then in high school and junior high school years is when black history is taught after you have been taught that your people were inferior, that they were not strong enough to not be enslaved. To come along afterwards...the damage has already been done. So I don't think it should be separated. I think that the contributions of African Americans should be taught from grade school on."
Frank, 32
"I think it is a positive gesture but I think more can be done. One month is not really enough. I think it could be celebrated throughout the year. I think more could be done and more could be added to the curriculum."
Peter, 60
"There are a lot of good people out there. There are very good black people out there that have contributed to society in more ways than one. I mean there are doctors out there, lawyers, and other professional people. I think more can be done for the black people and I also think it is very good that they observe their black history. I see nothing wrong with that."
Henry, 26
"I think our government wants to give some recognition to the redoubtable efforts by many black progressives especially in the last 40 years who have dedicated their lives to civil rights. So I think there is definitely something to be said about that. However, giving so much focus to that might overshadow other great causes and other great people but there's no doubt they are owed that for their sacrifice. And it's Christian and it's admirable and they are owed such respect."


 
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