Black History Month--It's Still Relevant

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The question of the month's relevance could be ended with a look at how children are educated, said John E. Fleming, director emeritus of the Association for the Study of African-American Life and History, which has its headquarters in Washington, D.C.

"All they have to do is look at school textbooks and curriculums and see that African-American history is not a major part of what's being taught in school today, in 2008," he said. "If you survey young people about African-American history, many can't recognize key figures. Just basic information, they don't know."

Meadowview Elementary teacher Essie Ruffin agrees. "We need to keep kids abreast of what was and what is. Some kids don't know. They may have heard the name, but they're not familiar with what they've done."

Willie Burton, a history professor at Southern University- Shreveport, agrees the original intent of the month is still relevant. "It's relevant until (black history) is incorporated into curriculums in schools. It has to go more than a month."

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