Kerry Washington knows that creating positive change within the community starts with educating ourselves and the ones around us, especially our children. In fact, the 43-year-old actress believes that there should be a different way of teaching Black history to kids.
On Monday, the Little Fires Everywhere actress made a virtual appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! to discuss the historic protests and the ongoing fight against racial injustice taking place around the globe. During the segment, Washington opened up about her approach to educating her three kids about racism and even suggested that school curriculums should change the way they teach Black history.
"The thing I've been thinking about a lot, honestly, with my kids—and with my friends' kids [is] education," she said. "And a lot about talking about race and introducing ideas of race. And really thinking about the idea that for a lot of kids—kids are introduced to race at Black History Month or in the concept of change-makers like Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. I think it's really important that we start to introduce the idea of race with a Black history that begins before teaching kids about what Black people were told they couldn't do,” she said. "Right, so there’s Maasai warriors and the kingdoms of Ghana, Queen Nefertiti and the pyramids of Egypt. Black history and Black people were a lot of things before segregation and Jim Crow and the civil rights movement.”
Modifying the syllabus will hopefully give kids the opportunity to better understand the Black experience. “So that we understand the beautiful complexity and elegance and richness of Black History before refusing to be put in the back of the bus,” she stated.
We couldn’t agree more.