February is Black History Month. Both Federal and Provincial governments recognize the importance of Black History Month. As Canadians and, more importantly, as a Catholic Community, we are called to live in solidarity. Solidarity requires that we learn from, and about our brothers and sisters in Christ. Regardless of the demographics of your school community, Black History is a conversation we must all be present to as it is everyone’s history. We invite you to explore the following resources to deepen your understanding of the contributions of Black Canadians both past and present.
Why a Black History Month? "African Canadian students need to feel affirmed; need to be aware of the contributions made by other Blacks in Canada; need to have role models; need to understand the social forces which have shaped and influenced their community and their identities as a means of feeling connected to the educational experience and their life experience in various regions in Canada." Read more from Rosemary Sadlier
Rollcall, by George Elliott Clarke, Canada's Parliamentary Poet Laureate, was created at the request of the Government of Canada as parts of its Black History Month 2017 campaign and in conjunction with Canada's 150th anniversary of Confederation. The poem lists prominent Black Canadians. Further information is available through the following: 23 Historical Black Canadians You Should Know
The Viola Desmond Story: A Heritage Minute
The History of the Church includes many Black/African Catholic saints, who received recognition for great deeds or meritorious conduct. Many lost their lives in defense of the faith. Many were also honoured for their contributions to the Church and their community.
February - 2022 Black Futures Speakers Series: Rebuild Restore Renew Together
Each February, the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board organizes the Black Futures Symposium as a forum for secondary students to learn, celebrate and embrace the past, present and future contributions of Black communities in Canada. Due to the pandemic protocols, the symposium is now a speakers series in which staff will be able to select a variety of pre-recorded sessions that they can use with their students.
As part of the Black Futures Speakers Series a new set of interviews will be made available through the Equitable and Inclusive Education SharePoint for educators. Through these recorded interviews educators and their classes have the unique opportunity to learn about and celebrate the contributions of Black Canadians. The Black Futures Speakers Series has expanded this year to include new interviewees that are all former DPCDSB grads. This year's theme is DPCDSB Black Excellence, and will cover interviews with Black individuals in the areas of STEAM, the Arts and Travel and Tourism.
This year's Black Futures Speakers Series has expanded to include:
- Anthonia Ogundele, Founder and Executive Director of Ethos Lab (Grades 7-12)
- Cameron Grant, Actor and Playwright (Grades 7-12)
- Oneika Raymond, Travel and Lifestyle Expert (Grades 7-12)
Through these unique and intimate interviews conducted by members of DPCDSB student senate, the hope is to inspire students and staff to see windows and mirrors and to continue to develop their diverse gifts and talents to share with the global community.
Available on SharePoint
Building Black Voices: A Guide to Creating a Black Voices Lab
The Department of Equity and Inclusion is offering a new resource created by students in DPCDSB. The Building Black Voices: A Guide to Creating a Black Voices Lab comes from the work of a few Black students at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Secondary School who created their very own “one of a kind” Black Voices Lab in early 2020. The vision for this work was to create a guide that centered the voices of Black students that were trailblazing paths within DPCDSB. As the guide states “Black students have been innovating and creating spaces for themselves for decades within our Catholic schools. The Black Voices Lab simply articulates, with all brilliance, independence, creativity, and power, how much more Black Students can and are committed to ensuring a bright and prosperous future for themselves, their peers, and the Black community in Canada”.
This guide is for students, by students, and supports the work outlined in the Catholic Board Improvement Learning Cycle. Schools can use this guide to support the work that they have already started, as well as to encourage the creation of such a club if it does not already exist within their school community.
Building Black Voices: A Guide to Creating a Black Voices Lab is a guide which you can use to support new or previously existing student/affinity/alliance clubs for Black students.
For this school year – we are offering funding to support these groups. The link below provides the resource as well as information and considerations for the funding application.
Link to: Black Voices Lab Guide and Information on Funding
- Black History in Canada Education Guide
- Black History Canada
- Black History in Canada Quiz
- Black History Society
- Government of Canada – Black History Month
Celebrating Our Canadian History Poster: Download Black History Month Poster