Mr. Jeff Johnson, St. Lucie Public Schools 2016 Teacher of the Year, read the following Proclamation at the February Board Meeting designating February, 2017, as African American History Month.
THE SCHOOL BOARD OF ST. LUCIE COUNTY
WHEREAS: The School Board of St. Lucie County takes pride in joining Americans throughout the country and various parts of the world in recognizing February, 2017, as National African American History Month; and
WHEREAS: African American History Month celebrates the contributions that African Americans have made to American history; and
WHEREAS: National African American History Month had its origin in 1915 and was initiated in 1926 by Dr. Carter G. Woodson as Black History Week, as it coincided with the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglas, two key figures in the history of African Americans; and
WHEREAS: In 1976, the commemoration of Black History in the United States was expanded to Black History Month and in 1986, President Ronald Reagan proclaimed that “the foremost purpose of Black History Month is to make all Americans aware of our struggle for freedom and equal opportunity, and deepens our understanding of our nation’s history”; and
WHEREAS: In 1994 and 2002, the Florida Legislature passed legislation to ensure that African and African American History content is taught in schools, a step that The School Board of St. Lucie County continues to take toward the infusion of African and African American History curriculum as part of the content taught and studied in Pre-K through grade 12; and
WHEREAS: This year’s theme, “Crisis in Black Education,” focuses on the crucial role of education in the history of African Americans, a history that is rich in centuries-old efforts of resistance to crisis by the slaves’ surreptitious endeavors to learn to the local community-based academic and mentorship programs that inspire a love of learning and thirst for achievement; a theme worthy of being considered as one of the most important goals in America’s past, present, and future.
NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that The School Board of St. Lucie County does hereby proclaim February, 2017, as “African American History Month” and calls upon its schools and the community to observe this month with programs, activities and ceremonies that are recognized and promoted throughout the district.