All too often, Black stories are missing from the school curriculum. Knowledge of Black history is either taught at home or acquired through books, extensive research or at an older age, HBCUs. Educator Dr. Sheva Quinn has presented her solution to the problem.
The retired U.S. Air Force veteran and homeschooling mother of two has developed the Black Classical University, a course meant to build knowledge of social justice issues through lessons about the Black Lives Matter movement, Black historical figures and the history of the Civil Rights Movement.
“When I initially opened up the course, the target audience was grades 4-12. But, in reality, I had kids in there that was as young as 5 years old and adults,” Quinn told NBC News.
“Right now, I am inundated with parents who want to enroll their children in my program because they are apprehensive about sending them back to school with COVID[-19],” Quinn told Patch in June. “They wanted an environment where children can see teachers who look like them, teach history related to them and with the Black Lives Matter protests and social injustices going on, they are being forced to have these discussions and some parents don’t know how to do that. We can’t shelter them when it is their reality.”
Quinn explains that her course will discuss hard topics surrounding Tamir Rice, Trayvon Martin, Breonna Taylor and others whose skin color was the impetus behind their tragic deaths. “We also have guest speakers who have been at the forefront of protests, in law, in history and more,” she said. “The thing is this is nothing new. It’s just that the cameras are here now. This course is designed to make them more aware, see what activism looks like and understand what they may be up against.”