Bringing Black History to Life

Blac History Month

Delaware County Council recognized February as Black History Month with a presentation and performance by students from Springfield High School who sang the song "Lift Every Voice and Sing.” The poem and song was written by James Weldon Johnson during a time in history when African-Americans were in the middle of their struggle for freedom. Shown at the meeting are, from right, students Nia Stevenson, Journey Fitzgerald and Camryn Council, Springfield teacher Fonda Akins, Councilman Dave White and, back row from right, Councilman John McBlain, Council Vice Chair Colleen Morrone, Chairman Mario Civera, Jr. and Councilman Michael Culp.

 

Springfield High students visit County Council
to present the poem and song “Lift Every Voice and Sing”

 
Powerful student presentations on civil rights leaders held the attention of those in attendance at the Feb. 8 County Council meeting as part of Council’s recognition of Black History Month.

Every February, County Council recognizes the accomplishments of African Americans throughout history in addition to the accomplishments of those living in our county.

As part of County Council’s recognition of Black History Month, three students from Springfield High School presented the history and sang the poem and song, “Lift Every Voice and Sing.” This poem and song was written by James Weldon Johnson during a time in history when African-Americans were in the middle of their struggle for freedom.

The students, Nia Stevenson, Journey Fitzgerald, and Camyrn Council, were invited to the Government Center by Delaware County Common Pleas Judge Nathaniel Nichols. As a scholar of African-American history, Judge Nichols strives to bring history to life for a new generation of young people so they can carry on the work of their ancestors. This year, Judge Nichols and his wife, Cheryl Nichols, a retired teacher, invited the students to make their presentation and receive a tour of the Delaware County Courthouse and Judge Nichol’s chambers. 

“Black History Month was started in 1926 by Carter G. Woodson, the descendent of slaves who became a noted author, educator and a dean at Howard University in Washington, D.C.,” said County Councilman Dave White. “We continue to celebrate the lives and accomplishments of great African-American leaders. It’s by learning about the struggles our ancestors faced, as they broke down barriers for us, that future generations can continue to work for equality and fairness for all people.”

At the meeting, Councilman White welcomed Fonda Akins, a learning support teacher who has taught in the Springfield School District for 22 years. In addition to teaching, Akins is the co-sponsor of a multi-cultural group called REACH, which stands for Respecting Ethnic and Cultural Heritage.