Amending JCPS High School Curriculum: Support the addition of “African American Studies”

Amending JCPS High School Curriculum: Support the addition of “African American Studies”

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Parin Rekhraj started this petition to Kentucky Board of Education and

   Breonna Taylor shone a light on Louisville. She was an upstanding citizen, an essential worker, a daughter, a sister, and so much more. With recent events, Jefferson County students have learned more in the last few days about African American history and political discourse than in their time at Jefferson County Public Schools. Current public outcry illuminates the repetitive failures of our justice system; a system that claims to serve citizens like Breonna. In order to enact real, long-lasting change within our city, we have to start by educating our students on topics that challenge and ask them to observe the world and places beyond their own spaces. 

   JCPS strives to adequately prepare its students to be productive members of the Louisville fabric, and in doing so should create a curriculum that encourages inclusion. Short lessons during Black History Month are NOT enough. By offering, and eventually requiring, African American Studies within the county curriculum, a more comprehensive education will be available. Educators should aim to create a curriculum that effectively represents the students they teach.

   An African American Studies course would allow students to better understand the historical context of the Black experience. Students would tackle social theory: privilege, intersectionality, individual and systemic (structural and institutional) racism and how they contribute or are affected by it. When talking with JCPS students, many have spoke on lack of realistic education they received on topics such as the slave trade, historic prison systems, and specifically Jim Crow and the Civil Rights movement. Education on Black history must encompass the whole history, not just a falsified timeline. Students need to understand the history of lynchings, police brutality, redlining and voting discrimination and its perpetuated presence in our country. When we understand the true roots of the inequities African American people face, we are better equipped to bring about the changes needed to solve deeply rooted social problems. 

   We, the undersigned, hereby petition the Jefferson County School Board to make “African American Studies” a course offered at each public high school in the district.

   Stories of Emmett Till, Trayvon Martin, Sandra Bland, George Floyd, Tony McDade, and Breonna Taylor have far too many parallels and we cannot allow more innocent people to become martyrs for a movement. In order to tackle these injustices currently faced, we must learn the history behind them.

   These signatures are the first step in creating an inclusive Louisville community that fosters hope for our future.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 7,500!
At 7,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get a reaction from the decision maker!