Valley Stream Central High School honored Black History Month with several events and activities in February. Motivational guests and students alike sparked positive, moving conversations while sharing important knowledge and advice.
Author Troy Lewis spent Feb. 6 at Central, where he addressed English and social studies classes in the library. He spoke about the importance of voting, segregation and integration and discussed important messages from his book, “Gas Money.” Lewis’s concept of Gas Money represents people who supported him and subsequently helped him reach his destination.
On Feb. 12, highly respected author, speaker and educational advocate Geoffrey Canada stood before students, staff, administrators and members of the Board of Education in the auditorium for a presentation and question and answer session. A Valley Stream resident, he described his background, greatest influences and strategies for success. Canada established the Harlem Children’s Zone, a network of programs that strives to help children in areas of poverty achieve success through support and services inside and outside of school, is chairman of the Children's Defense Fund's board of directors and published two books that focus on poverty and violence.
Canada emphasized the points that students should take grades seriously and keep their goals set high.
“Grades do matter, but they shouldn’t define who you are,” he said. “You should always believe that you can get that top grade if you work hard.”
The tributes and observations continued on Feb. 13 with an annual event held in the library. Students spoke about impactful Black Americans who have contributed to the world as leaders, civil rights activists, artists, writers, athletes and more. Under the direction of Lisa DiChiara, Library Media Specialist, students from English and African American History classes shared information about their featured individuals and explained how they have inspired them.
These are just some of the many inspiring ways that Valley Stream schools have honored Black History Month.