NEWARK, NJ – During this year’s Black History Month, Weequahic High School’s Black History Month Committee will be sponsoring a myriad of cultural programs for the students. This year school’s theme is Forward Ever Backwards Never. The quote is taken from Ghana’s first President Kwame Nkrumah, who helped liberate Ghanaians from British colonialism in the 1950s. Here is a list of events taken place at the school:
Friday, February 2, the school will commemorate Black History Month with the raising of the Black Liberation Flag. The ceremony will be the following: 1) Explain the significance of the Black Liberation flag, 2) Pour libation to the ancestors, 3) Sing the Black National Anthem, 4) Perform culturally conscious Poetry, and 5) End the program with seven Harambees (Kiswahili for people pulling together). The colors of the Black Liberation Flag are red, black and green. Red represents the shedding of the innocent blood of Black people. Black represents Black people all over the planet. Green represents mother Africa. This event will be facilitated by history teacher Charles Sheppard, English teacher Robert Hylton, and history teacher Bashir Muhammad Akinyele during morning convocation in the gymnasium.
Friday, February 9, there will be a special cross cultural program called We Shall Not Be Moved. This event will discuss a documentary of Newark’s famous Rabbi Joachim Prinz unifying with the African American Civil Rights Freedom Struggles of the 1950’s and 60’s. With the rise of Adolf Hitler and the Nazism in Germany, Rabbi Prinz left Europe and settled in New Jersey. He became the spiritual leader of Temple B’ Nai Abraham in Newark, but because of his activism against Nazism, he saw the need to unite with African Americans against racial oppression in America. IIyse Shainbrown of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest of NJ will moderate the program with Weequahic High School Alumni Association Executive Director Myra Lawson in the media center.
Starting on February, 20, 2018, history teacher Mr. Akili Buchannon will moderate African American films that center on the great accomplishments of Black women everyday after-school in his classroom from 3:00pm to 5:00pm.
Wednesday, February, 21, history teacher George White and the Future Project facilitator Ms. Chop will sponsor a field trip for a group of students to see the new movie Black Panther.
Friday, February 16, and on Friday February 23, groups of students will memorize, debate, and discuss famous African American quotes. These events will be moderated by Ms. Chop and Weequahic Teachers in media center.
Tuesday, February, 27, Ms. Chop and Mr. Bashir Muhammad Akinyele will moderate a panel discussion called Expressions of the Afrikan Disapora. The students and panelists will discuss the different experiences of being Black in America and in the world.
Throughout the month, daily announcements will be made over the intercom by students on major events in African American history.
Art teacher Mr. Dadisi Dubose will have his students display their Black cultural artwork all over the school’s hallways.
The Black History Month Committee was created by history teachers to organize programs and activities for February’s Black History Month and for the school year at Weequahic High School for students and the community.
Bashir Akinyele, the Chairperson of the Black History Month committee and a history teacher at Weequahic High School, says, “Black History Month must be a time to inspire people of all walks of life to seriously study the great accomplishments and contributions people of African descent made to the World!”
For more information about Weequahic High School’s Black History Month programs, contact (908) 956-3523 or (973) 705-3795.