Hundreds of schools sign up for Hackney’s Black History curriculum

Hackney’s Deputy Mayor Anntoinette Bramble speaking to young people on Black History. Pic: Hackney Council

More than 500 schools across the UK have signed up to follow a new Black History curriculum developed by Hackney Council, just one month after its launch.

The freely available nine-week curriculum, ‘The Black Contribution,’ teaches young people about Britain’s diverse history and highlights both past and present contributions of the black community in Hackney and across the UK. 

The council introduced the programme on October 19 and announced this week that over 500 schools across the UK have signed up. About 200 schools in London are now teaching the curriculum.

In Hackney, 83 schools have adapted the programme, as have 7 schools in Tower Hamlets, 7 schools in Lewisham and 1 school in Croydon.

Councillor Anntoinette Bramble, Deputy Mayor of Hackney and Cabinet Member for Education, Young People and Children’s Social Care, said: “Seeing so many schools take up this curriculum proves a desire for this vital education.”

Old Lady’s Catholic school in Hackney was one of the first schools to welcome the new curriculum. Headteacher Justine McDonald said in a statement: “I want all of our students to have a sense of belonging. I want them to have the tools to be confident about who they are and how they can contribute to our society and communities.”

Over 50 modules are featured in the curriculum, including ‘The Windrush Generation, Activism’ and ‘Untold Stories, Stories of our Lives’ which can be adapted to the need of the students.

“These packs will help teachers deliver the message that Black history is British history. The curriculum highlights that Black lives matter and that we all have a part to play in dismantling systemic racism and celebrating Black culture,” Bramble said.

Last week, the council published Hackney’s Black history map, designed by Marcie Mintrose, which links the borough’s history to specific sites.

Both the introduction of this new curriculum and the map are in line with the council’s commitment to being an anti-racist borough, outlined in their Black Lives Matter Motion.

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