It is time pan-African studies be implemented on the curriculum of primary and secondary schools.
This call came from David Denny, pan-Africanist and secretary of the Pan-African Coalition of Organizations as he delivered remarks during the coalition’s launch of Black History Month activities, at the Pelican Art Gallery, Pelican Village.
He said over the years, the pan-African community in Barbados called for African studies to be designed for primary and secondary school students, in an effort to give them a greater knowledge and appreciation of their African history and culture.
At the same time, Denny applauded the schools that every year celebrated the historical month through various activities.
“We need to now encourage the institutions to carry that programme to a higher a level to create the conditions for African studies to form part of a major coarse within the education system in Barbados, and not just use one month explain African history and our culture and our achievements.
But it should be a major programme now within the school system at the primary level and the secondary level.
“Black History Month is all about developing the level of consciousness about our own African heritage, and we are very pleased to note that the Commission for Pan-Affairs has a Mabalozi programme where they have brought a number of the social studies teachers into a programme and give them the training and help to prepare them so that they can fully organise these kind of programs in the school system,” he said.
David Comissiong, also a member of the coalition said that he fully agreed with Denny’s call and indicated that pan-Africanists in Barbados were ready to give assistance in the implementation of the studies through the production of educational book publications, video, dance and poetry presentations, among other needed material.
Comissiong said that he was in the process of developing educational material for the schools, Reasonings With The Youth, which would become an ideal black history text particularly for secondary students.
“We are convinced that we have the ability to produce the necessary education material for our own people. We are not waiting on anybody to produce the material for us. So we are encouraging our communities and schools to get involved in this kind of education process. And we are assuring them that we will be producing the education material to assist them and to make it easy for them to pursue that kind of educational programme,” said Comissiong.
One of the highlights for February’s Black History Month will be the launch of the coalition’s University Of Independence Square project, the beginning of an ongoing programme where Independence Square, The City will be used as a venue for public education.
“We will be dealing with all of the critical issues, it will be relevant to the pressing issues that our people are dealing with,” explained Comissiong who said that the programme would be outlined in a detailed format through an upcoming Press conference.
Some of the scheduled events for the month include an African Heritage Month Celebration to be held on Sunday at the Mount Pisgah Spiritual Baptist Church, Roebuck Street, St Michael, It’s The Healing of the Nation book launch and Bob Marley celebration at the Spirit Bond, Bridgetown. On February 15, there will be the launch of the University of Independence Square, Independence Square, Bridgetown, and on February 28 there will be a Return To Our Own showcase hosted by the Nuwabian
Nation Group at Bank Hall, St Michael, among other events.