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UCDSB Celebrates Black History, Culture and Promotes Equity During Black History Month
UCDSB Celebrates Black History, Culture and Promotes Equity During Black History Month
Posted on 02/16/2022
Black History Month

February 16, 2022 (Brockville, ON) – February is Black History Month and Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) schools have taken the opportunity to focus on and celebrate Black history and culture, and the significant contributions that Black Canadians have had on our country.

UCDSB students have been engaging in classroom activities and school-wide events for this special recognition month. Here are examples of what is happening around our district:

Five UCDSB schools — Carleton Place High School, Perth & District Collegiate Institution, Tagwi Secondary School, Thousand Islands Secondary School, and Vankleek Hill Collegiate Institute — contributed to a district-wide Black History Month video that uses spoken word poetry to promote historical black role models and the message of coming together to “educate to blast out hate.”  Watch the video here.

Iroquois Public School’s entire school community participated in a virtual read-aloud presentation by Akilah Newton, a Black Canadian and author of ‘Movers, Shakers, History Makers: The Canadian Black History Book of Rhymes.’

Maynard Public School held a school-wide virtual assembly where they celebrated the contribution of Black Canadians through videos and artwork, unpacked the words ‘race’ and ‘racism,’ and discussed ways to be an upstander and standup to all forms of hate.

Russell Public School begins each morning by reading an excerpt from the book Trailblazers: The Black Pioneers Who Have Shaped Canada on the announcements, which ties into classroom learning throughout the school. Students are going on a virtual field trip to ‘Making Waves: Celebrating Black Music and the history of Canadian Jazz’ at Ripley’s Aquarium, and have decorated their hallways with student artwork.

Another valuable resource that is available to all staff, students and families is the UCDSB Virtual Learning Commons (VLC). It has a section dedicated to e-books, videos, websites, and classroom resources that brings Black culture and history to the forefront, and is widely used within UCDSB schools.

Black History Month is an excellent opportunity to celebrate and learn about the extraordinary contributions of Black Canadians in our communities and around the world. Historically, the contributions of Black authors, poets, politicians, educators and artists have not been represented and valued as much as their peers, which is a form of systemic racism,” explains Dan McRae, Principal of Equity and Inclusion. “Our schools are committed to working with our students, staff, families and communities to ensure that the contributions of Black people are celebrated and valued in our schools and classrooms both during Black History Month and throughout the school year. I'm very proud of our schools for the work that is happening, and of our communities that continue to expect us to do better. We know better, and we are now, more than ever, committing to doing better.”

Principal McRae has been travelling to classrooms across the district to promote Black History Month and equity and inclusion within the UCDSB. His role is new to the UCDSB for the 2021-2022 school year.

 

 

For more information, please contact:

April Scott-Clarke
Manager of Communications
Upper Canada District School Board
[email protected]

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