Matthews Black History

Story by WVUA 23’s Maria Blough.

February is almost over and students at Matthews Elementary School wrapped up the month with their annual Black History Month program.

Every grade level learned more about important black figures throughout history. At the event, history came alive for students with special guest Rickey Powell.

In the 1960s, Powell was a foot soldier of the Civil Rights Movement and his best friend was one of the girls who died in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombings.

“It’s a wonderful thing that we all know where we come from all of us, not just black kids, Hispanic kids, white kids,” Powell said. “We all need to know where we come from and how, if we work together, we can do better.” Students also gave history life through their projects.

“Every year we have our black history program, and it gets better and better,” said April Dancy, a second-grade teacher. “Every year our students perform to the fullest.” Dancy’s second graders chose a specific person to present on. Older students wrote and read their own poems, and some students chose to dance.

“Sometimes we bypass the history that was made, and we don’t learn it,” said Taril Slater, a third-grade teacher. “Therefore how can we move forward if we don’t know our past. I think that is one thing I wanted them to learn–the ultimate goal.”

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