BPHS to host African American Read-In

Joanna White, Staff Writer

On Sunday, Feb. 7, all students, staff and the general public are invited to attend the African American Read-In, which begins at 2 p.m. in the LGI Room. Admission to the event is free.

The Read-In is hosted by the High School English Department and S.T.A.N.D and sponsored nationally by the National Council of Teachers of English program.

Members of S.T.A.N.D. will perform short pieces from our shared African American literary heritage.

This is the second annual Read-In. The first was held last year. The idea started when the English Department’s Mr. Youngs attended a conference which encouraged and instructed people to incorporate different ethnic groups into the community. And hopefully, bring about more awareness. So, Mr. Youngs proposed the idea, and S.T.A.N.D. was more than happy to step up to the plate.

Mrs. Ford, S.T.A.N.D. adviser, hopes that this event will “let everyone know what African Americans have contributed to the world: the history, the literature. [We want] people to know that we were a part of making America. And hopefully [we will] see our valuable contributions being respected.”

But, what is Black History Month, and why is it so important? In another Statement, Mrs. Ford said: “I think it’s acknowledgement of African Americans’ contributions to the United States. Hopefully this will expand from one month to the whole year, and include all races not just African Americans… This is something to be proud about. In the ’60s/’70s, we had black pride, but that has faded since then. Hopefully, with this the younger generation, will see how powerful we are as a people. And that we can be anything. We are more than a stereotype.”

Tentatively, the planned program is as follows:

  • Tania Beattie: “Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou
  • Rebecca Burrell: “I Can’t Breathe” by Ebony Delaney
  • Jada Doleno: “Caged Bird” by Maya Angelou
  • Taylor Finnegan: “Dreams” by Langston Hughes
  • Rachel Gilliam: “Ballad of Birmingham” by Dudley Randall
  • Ellis Griffith: “A Black Woman’s Smile” by Ty Gray-El
  • Jamisha Jacobs: “DuBois in Ghana” by Evie Shockley
  • Jennifer Kramer: “I Don’t Mind” by Maya Angelou
  • Sara McCauley: “Freedom Walk” by Charlize F.
  • Maxx McGee: “Love Cycle” by Chinua Achebe
  • Shayaan Meyers: “Glory” by John Legend
  • Terron Murphy: “A Rose that Grew from Concrete” by Tupac
  • James O’Neal: “I Am Black” by James O’Neal
  • Mara Niccoli : “Racism Is Around Me Everywhere” by Francis Duggan
  • Brendan Todd: “Lift Every Voice and Sing” by James Weldon Johnson

As we continue on through 2016 and into the upcoming years, more and more people are becoming aware of Black History Month. Hopefully this will also further that awareness. So, be sure to attend the event this Sunday!

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