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Seal of the Governor
For Immediate Release: February 4, 2020
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Alena Yarmosky, Alena.Yarmosky@governor.virginia.gov | Office of the Secretary of Education: Tori Noles, Victoria.Noles@governor.virginia.gov

Governor Northam’s Commission on African American History Education to Hold Listening Sessions

RICHMOND—Governor Ralph Northam’s African American History Education Commission is seeking community input as it examines how to strengthen African American history education and the Virginia history education standards in the Commonwealth’s public schools.  The Commission is launching a series of public listening sessions in February and March.

The dates and locations of the sessions are as follows:

  • Tuesday, February 11
    Harrison Museum of African American Culture, One Market Square Southeast, #2, Roanoke, Virginia 24011

  • Wednesday, February 12
    Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia, 122 West Leigh Street, Richmond, Virginia 23220

  • Wednesday, March 18
    J.M. Langston School, 228 Cleveland Street, Danville, Virginia 24541

  • Wednesday, March 11
    Norfolk State University, 700 Park Avenue, Nursing and General Education Building, Room 101, Norfolk, Virginia 23504

  • [POSTPONED] Thursday, March 12
    Woodbridge Middle School, 2201 York Drive, Woodbridge, Virginia 22191
    Details about the rescheduled event will be made available here.

All listening sessions will take place from 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM. Sessions will begin with a moderated panel discussion facilitated by the members of the Commission, followed by public comment. Speakers will have three minutes each to address the Commission.

In August, Governor Northam signed an executive order establishing the Commission and directing its members to review Virginia’s History and Social Science Standards of Learning and the instructional practices, content, and resources currently used to teach African American history—including the need for professional development for teachers on culturally competent instruction.

The executive order also directed the Virginia Department of Education, in collaboration with Virtual Virginia, WHRO Public Media, history teachers, university historians, and college professors, to develop a high school-level African American history course.

More information about Governor Northam’s African American History Education Commission and the public listening sessions is available on the Commission’s website.

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