Celebrating Black History Month at St. Francis
February is Black History Month where we learn about Black history. Through St. Francis’ development, the community has grown into a diverse environment for all genders and races. Last month, the JEDI council (Justice Equity Diversity and Inclusion) put together a way to celebrate black creators and culture throughout the month.
On Feb. 3 president of JEDI council, senior Alex Irwin led a presentation about Black people's role in the Fine Arts. Her presentation included Black writers, poets, actors, and directors from last century up to modern times. Kendra Criner, Aniyah Patterson, and I each participated in presenting a category.
Patterson read We Wear the Mask by Paul Laurence Dunbar, a poem that compares the pain of oppression to wearing a mask to hide the suffering and Criner played a video on the rise of hip hop.
On Feb. 8, sophomore Amina Frankfort led a presentation on segregation where she showed educational videos on the history of Black peoples’ experience in America from past to present. She was accompanied by Janis Mbibi and Aniyah Patterson who helped put the presentation together. Afterwards, college counselor and proctor of JEDI council Steven Scales led an activity to give an idea of how different races struggle in society. Seven students all standing in different areas of the room would throw a paper ball into the trash can placed in the center of the room. The message was that the person closest to the trash can was more likely to get it in than the person on the other side of the room.
On Feb. 22, Harold Baber presented a video on Black cowboys in honor of the rodeo coming back in season. Many students were surprised to learn that Black people were the first cowboys. As the end of the month approached, the JEDI council wanted to support a Black-owned company. Conveniently, Harold Baber knew the owner of a local Black-owned food truck that travels all over Houston. So, on the very last day of February, BW BBQ Fish & More came to St. Francis to serve lunch. The students enjoyed barbeque, sausage, fish, and more and went back for seconds.
Here at St. Francis, we want it to be an inclusive environment where everyone’s differences are celebrated. “It’s important to educate Black history so history doesn’t keep repeating itself,” says Amina.
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