Unfortunately, living and growing up in world as a black boy poses its own set of challenges. As an aunt of many nephews who are black, I find myself worried every time they walk out of the door. I constantly tell them, don’t wear their hood on their heads while walking or while in a store, and if encountered by the police don’t put their hands in their pockets. Although, I hate giving this continuous talk, I’d rather them get sick of hearing me rather than get into some serious situation. Being a black boy is hard and I’m so appreciative that there’s a documentary dedicated to this matter. Please join GESMV’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee as they dive into a documentary with an overview on this subject at hand.
On September 12th, GESMV-West Campus hosted Preschool Promise’s community watch party of Sonia Lowman’s award-winning documentary “Black Boys.” The event saw a great turnout, with parents, educators, school administrators, daycare providers and staff, retirees, The Honorable Mary McDonald (Mayor-Trotwood), and President Emeritus Dr. Daniel Curran (Unv of Dayton), were in attendance. The event was also attended by several GESMV employees, including DEI Council members Lance Detrick (President-CEO), Rhonda Kline (Director of Human Resources), LaVar Glover (Director of West Campus), and Tiffany McGuire-Edwards (DEI Facilitator).
“Black Boys” is a documentary that couldn’t have come at a more crucial time. It arrives during a period of increased awareness and activism surrounding racial justice, sparked by events like the tragic killing of George Floyd in 2020. The documentary offers viewers an opportunity to engage with the lived experiences of Black boys and men, a demographic that has been historically underserved and often misrepresented in media. The documentary delves into the complex issue of racial identity and the stereotypes Black boys and men encounter from an early age. It highlights how these stereotypes can shape their self-perception and impact their social interactions. The film also spotlights the disparities in the American education system that hinder the academic success of Black students. It also examines the school-to-prison pipeline, where Black boys are disproportionately pushed out of schools and into the criminal justice system.
Preschool Promise serves the Dayton/Montgomery County area. Their “Black Boy Brilliance” initiative focuses on addressing the unique challenges and opportunities facing Black boys in the context of early childhood education. This initiative recognizes the importance of early intervention to ensure that Black boys have equal access to quality education and support for their development. By actively participating in and supporting the Preschool Promise’s “Black Boy Brilliance” initiative, the community can play a vital role in fostering Black boys’ educational success and overall well-being, helping them reach their full potential.
The documentary said that African American students get a window into the world, while white students get a mirror. “Black Boys” served as both a mirror and a window, reflecting the experiences of Black boys and men in America while providing an opportunity for others to empathize and take action. By addressing crucial themes such as identity, education, criminal justice, and resilience, the film challenges viewers to confront the systemic issues that perpetuate racial disparities and inequality.
“Black Boys” reminds us of the urgent need to dismantle oppressive systems and uplift the voices of those who have been marginalized for far too long. It is a testament to the power of storytelling in advocating for a more equitable and inclusive society where Black boys and men can thrive and achieve their full potential.
To learn more about how Preschool Promise is transforming preschool for Black Boys or to learn more on how you can help, go to https://www.preschoolpromise.org/TransformingPreschoolforBlackBoys.aspx for more information.