Deeply Rooted Black Educational Program:
Sociocultural diversity continues to be of significant concern for education, students, parents, and community members. Based on anecdotal and evidence-based data, current pedagogy, policy, and practice in Ontario schools do not adequately include Afro-centric content in learning. Schools do not show the importance of local Black community members in shaping the historical and cultural landscapes. The need to create a local sense of place is necessary for anti racism, equitable, and inclusive education. Local connections are local history, which reflects Black history as the city of Hamilton’s history. The ACCA educational program focuses on rethinking pedagogy that affirms Black History in the city of Hamilton. Therefore, themes covered in the Deeply Rooted Youth Education Program respond to the children’s daily lives and activities are placed within the larger contexts of the Hamilton community.
Program Framework: The foundation on which ACCA’s Deeply Rooted Youth Educational Program is Nguzo Saba- the seven principles of Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa is a week-long holiday where families and communities come together. Nguzo Saba supports the African diaspora’s connection to traditional African culture and values. Youth in the program learn that African cultural artifacts and ways of knowing do exist and are an important part of education. The seven principles- unity, self-determination, creativity, faith, collective work and responsibility, purpose, cooperative economics are rooted in classes and are taught simultaneously
The program target age group is grades 3- 8 (junior to intermediate students). It is essential to initiate Afrocentric experiences and ways of knowing as early as possible and reinforce them through foundational instructional and learning strategies to set youth on a path to improve overall self-efficacy and academic acuity.