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Interview

Who Gets to Tell Our History?

When children see themselves and their communities mirrored in school curriculum, they learn better. But traditional curriculum situates people of the African Diaspora in a minimally positive — and many times negative — light, which has led to generations of Black students feeling disengaged.

  • March 25th 2021
Yoni Henderson
Who Gets to Tell Our History?

Kaya Henderson, CEO of Reconstruction, speaks with Yoni Appelbaum, senior editor at The Atlantic.

What we teach our children isn’t inclusive. One woman wants to change that.

When children see themselves and their communities mirrored in school curriculum, they learn better. But traditional curriculum situates people of the African Diaspora in a minimally positive — and many times negative — light, which has led to generations of Black students feeling disengaged. Kaya Henderson is working to change that. As the former chancellor of DC public schools, she founded Reconstruction, an educational program for Black youth across America. “How do we draw on the tradition of Freedom Schools and citizenship schools to make sure that our kids understand African American history?,” she says. She talks with Yoni Appelbaum, senior editor at The Atlantic, about her efforts to champion diversity.

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