Educational endeavors should start by learning our history
Every Trenton school year should begin with two topics.
Every woman, man and child should know the United States history regarding slavery, not as a guilt weapon or excuse but for understanding current opportunity, despite perceived and real daily challenges.
Armed with history about how past black lives mattered a lot less than today, an unfortunate circumstance precipitated by people who claimed religious objectives, we can teach these new faces self worth.
A need to understand that one key component about slavery involved an edict to assure that those in chains never learned to read or write.
Are you getting this, Trenton? That’s why your libraries closed, why Gov. Chris Christie refused to give you a new high school until national news got wind of his belligerent stance that would have affected negatively his presidential dreams.
In almost eight years, Christie never visited Trenton High to energize, support and encourage.
Unfortunate that Trenton High closed for demolition before the McDonald’s opened on Chambers St. Christie might have dropped by the TCHS campus while in pursuit of a Big Mac.
Christie and Trenton Mayor Eric Jackson should have bonded for an education message.
The little boy inside me jumped for joy in August when our eyes observed all the free books available for those children attending the Back to School Academic Extravaganza at the Board of Education.
Not much media coverage for positive educational objectives as the system continues an attack on urban life until regentrification occurs.
Gregory School Principal Michael Rosenberg pulled me aside for an explanation about a city and news outlets overselling bad news.
The best offer in town involves The Trentonian’s “Good News Friday” section. If you have positive events and accomplishments then send them here.
A second mandatory learning initiative involves Gladys Hedgepeth and Berline Williams.
No problem if you produced a blank response, reason enough for this education effort.
Hedgepeth and Williams sued the Trenton Board of Education over racial discrimination, an action that provided groundwork for the national education blockbuster Brown v. Board of Education.
In September 1943, Leon Williams and Janet Hedgepeth, residents of Trenton’s Wilbur section, attempted to enroll at Junior High No. 2 but were told the school did not accept Negro students.
Williams and Hedgepeth were instructed to gain admission into the all black Lincoln School, about 2.5 miles away.
Gladys Hedgepeth and Berline Williams could never accept the illogical system and discrimination.
The New Jersey Supreme Court rendered a decision on January 31, 1944, deciding that Junior School No. 2 “unlawfully discriminated” against the students and were in a direct violation of statute N.J.S.A. 18:14-2.
This statute makes clear “it is unlawful for boards of education to exclude children from any public school on grounds that they are of negro race.”
Not only should Trenton schools teach this remarkable education triumph, Gladys Hedgepeth and Berline Williams deserve a day of recognition.
Back to School Extravaganza attracted hundreds of Trenton Public Schools students and their parents at the Board of Education building. Attendees received book bags, school supplies, lunch and information to support a positive learning year.