Working with Black youth for the past 40 years, I’ve learned the importance of knowledge of self. None of the educational materials available in the pre-Internet days have been up to the task of helping the youth discover their own potential and achieve it. The materials I’ve found are often well intentioned and well done, but none of them amounted to a holistic curriculum in a box, that could be applied universally. The need for a comprehensive, holistic, curriculum has only increased over the years. Unfortunately, teachers, like soldiers on the frontline, never have had enough time to do anything about it.
As a homeschooler, in the early days of the 21st century, I encountered the same problem. There were homeschooling curricula in a box, but none that spoke directly to their historical needs or the needs of their communities. As we approach the 3rd decade of the 21st century the need is still unmet. It is this need that Blakfacts Educational Research, Inc. (BER), a 501 c3 corporation, aims to fulfill.
BER is not interested in doing what we’ve seen others do. In today’s public schools old curricula and curriculum models are being repackaged and distributed via the Internet. Much like putting old wine in new bottles, the current Internet enabled curricula are being haphazardly created, with little to no field testing. They are woefully lacking in creativity, innovation and forward thinking. What now passes for cutting edge curriculum is just as irrelevant to students, in general and Black students, in particular, as they were in my day.
We seek to change all of that, by creating a relevant, innovative, multi-media curriculum, from scratch and field testing it, before presenting it to the public. Our curriculum materials look at the world from a global perspective, while focusing on the impact people of African descent have had in specific localities. Our mission is clear, we are doing the research, documenting the history of local communities, producing and distributing our materials globally. At the same time, we’re creating a model for documenting and sharing the history of Pan-African communities everywhere. In the process we’re creating relevant, multicultural curricula for the future.