The MKA community honored and celebrated Black History Month across all three campuses. The school’s curriculum includes Black history in all grades, but students had many opportunities to learn more about and celebrate Black culture and impactful Black individuals throughout the month of February.
At a Middle School assembly held in Logan Auditorium, student representatives and faculty members highlighted influential Black environmentalists, activists, and community members including Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, George Washington Carver, John Francis, Mejora Carter, and Hazel Johnson. Students also read and unpacked Ibram Kendi’s book, Antiracist Baby. The history department held multiple Black History drop-in workshops during each flex period in which students were able to participate. The flexes included: Poetry of Langston Hughes, Why is Black History Month in February?, Black Wall Street, African American Quilting (kids made quilt squares), and Queer Black History. Finally, students participated in Joyful Friday virtual read alouds of Lillian's Right to Vote: a Celebration of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 by Jonah Winter and Soul Food Sunday by Winsome Bingham.
Ugandan musician Mr. Daniel SSuna visited the Primary School and immediately captivated the students when he greeted them from the stage with dance, music, and stories. Fusing East African music, dance, and storytelling, his performance was the first all-school assembly of the year. Everyone was excited to be together at last, and the energy of the children was evident throughout the room. The students closed the assembly with the song Music Director Jane Smith gifted to Mr. Ssuna, “Lift Every Voice,” and they sang with feeling and enthusiasm.
The Upper School celebrated Black History Month with its annual dinner hosted by the Black Student Affinity group. The exciting event started with opening remarks from Head of Upper School Dr. David Flocco, followed by an original poem by junior Clay Hudson. Dr. Nicole Furlonge, Professor and Director of the Klingenstein Center, Teachers College Columbia University, delivered a touching keynote address sharing her life story and how, through perseverance and resilience, she was able to navigate a challenging situation. Afterward, students, faculty, families, and other guests enjoyed a delicious dinner catered by Sweet T’s Southern Eatery. The dinner was wrapped up with an interactive Black History Month trivia game. A wonderful evening was had by all who attended.