Teaching the truth throughout the school yearBy Dr. Conrad Worrill -Guest Columnist- | Last updated: Aug 19, 2013 - 12:02:42 PM
This movement has now become popularly known as the African-Centered Education Movement. Simply stated, it focuses on teaching the truth concerning the contributions of Black people to the development of civilization in all subjects. During this new school year we must heighten the dialogue concerning the importance of this movement, particularly as it relates to the future of our children.
Throughout the country, Blacks in America have become more sensitive to challenging the racist and White supremacist basis of America’s public school curriculum.
There is not a day that goes by that someone does not call my office seeking information and help on how to start the process of changing the curriculum in their school. Parents are becoming more and more dissatisfied with what their children are being taught. They are also beginning to realize how much isn’t taught.
It is clear that the public school system is the place where Black children receive a significant portion of their view of the world and the history of the world. And, it also is a place where large numbers of Black youth are miseducated under the system of White supremacy through the ideas and interpretation of history that is presented to them.
Let’s turn to Carter G. Woodson’s great book, The Mis-Education of the Negro to get some further insight into this problem. Woodson observes “the so-called modern education, with all its defects, however, does others so much more good than it does the Negro, because it has been worked out in conformity to the needs of those who have enslaved and oppressed weaker people.”
For example, Woodson says, “The philosophy and ethics resulting from our educational system have justified slavery, peonage, segregation and lynching. The oppressor has the right to exploit, to handicap, and to kill the oppressed.”
Continuing on Woodson explains, “No systematic effort toward change had been possible for, taught the same economics, history, philosophy, literature and religion which have established the present code of morals, the Negro’s mind has been brought under control of his oppressor.”
Concluding on this point Woodson states, “The problem of holding the Negro down, therefore, is easily solved. When you control a man’s thinking you do not have to worry about his actions.”
Therefore, it is inspiring to see so many of our people waking up all over America and seeking the truth concerning the real contributions of Black people to the world. Through study groups, conferences, Black talk radio, information network exchanges, Black Americans are coming into a new Black consciousness that seeks to reclaim the African mind and spirit.
Through the Portland Model Baseline Essays, the work of the Kemetic Institute, the Association for the Study of Classical African Civilizations, and other writings and curriculum materials, Africans are becoming much more aware of the following points that must be incorporated into the curriculum.
1. Africa is the home of early man.
2. Africa is the cradle of modern man.
3. Africa is the cradle of civilization.
4. Africa once held a position as world teacher including the teacher for the Western world.
5. There was and there still is a continental wide unity in Africa and in the African communities around the world.
6. The first time Africans left the continent was not on slave ships.
7. Africa and African people all over the world have been under siege for nearly 2,000 years and only recently by European slavery and colonization.
8. There is an African Diaspora all over the world today.
9. African people have resisted domination on the continent and all over the world.
10. Even under slavery, colonization, segregation, apartheid, African people have made monumental contributions to arts, science and politics.
These ten points, and others, have become the basis upon which we can judge the
White supremacy public school curriculums content in textbooks and other learning materials.
In other words, these points have become the basis of determining whether the truth is being taught in the public schools of this country.
The Truth will set us all free!
(Dr. Conrad Worrill, director/professor of the Carruthers Center for Inner City Studies located at 700 East Oakwood Blvd in Chicago, can be reached at 773-268-7500. You can also reach him via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, Web site: www.ccics-chicago.org, Twitter: @CCICS_Chicago)