Black History Month at Park


Jana Schodzinski, Business Manager

Black History Month spans throughout February and is a time to honor and appreciate African American culture. It is also a time to reflect on African American history, as well as past and current struggles. Here at Park, many of our teachers are celebrating Black History Month with their students, as well as educating them on what it is. 

Mrs. Droginske, a theatre and English teacher, says, “My journalism class is designing Ida B. Wells, a Black investigative journalist, swag in the new Maker’s Space area in the ILC. My English class is reading Trevor Noah’s Born A Crime even though we also read that in January because any month is Black History month. I also have lots of t-shirts and earrings that I will be wearing across this month by Black small businesses.” 

Mr. Schultz, an art teacher, says, “What I really try to do in my Art II classes is focus on the works of Jacob Lawrence. In Foundations, I focus on Faith Ringgold, and those are two predominant Black American artists. Both of them had a lot of influence on the civil rights movement and stuff. That’s what I plan to do.” 

Mr. Howard, a history teacher who also teaches a Black history class, says, “What I try to do is this: I try to include black history as part of the American history/US History curriculum. Black history is something that has to be embedded in US History. Throughout the United States, people of African descent have been here since 1619. Their experiences, their world views, their perceptions, their narratives, and stories. They should be included in every single unit that you study in American history. Oftentimes, people do something special for Black History Month, maybe they focus on a great Black historical figure, a poet, a civil rights sitter, or maybe someone who accomplished something that filled abysses for science. I focus on Black lives and Black narratives every single day that I can in the classroom. So for me, it’s something that’s common in a good way. Black narratives and Black voices are amplified here every day whether it’s Black History or a general US History course.” 

Finally, Mrs. Dailer, the principal here at WPHS, says, “We always work very closely with the Social Studies department to ensure that we are giving Black History Month its due. I know that there are some displays that are going to be happening; we have some guest speakers coming in and talking about some historical moments; just recently Ms. Zumbrennan’s AP class did t-shirts with Black authors and their favorite quotes and likenesses on them. We definitely have some things planned for throughout the month.”

In conclusion, Black history is very important to be celebrated not only in February, but throughout the year. Get out there and celebrate Black History Month, as it is very important to educate yourself on the past and present of African-American culture. Happy Black History Month!