The original Freedom Schools were built around the idea of understanding who we are and the struggles our communities face under oppression:
We are going to talk about a lot of things: about Negro people and white people, about rich people and poor people, about the South and about the North, about you and what you think and feel and want. . . . And we’re going to try to be honest with each other and say what we believe. . . . We’ll also ask some questions and try to find some answers. The first thing is to look around, right here, and see how we live in Mississippi.
(Source: Mississippi Freedom School Curriculum)
Today, our communities still face many of the same struggles they did in the 1960’s: segregated, inadequate education, poor housing options, an out-of-control criminal justice system, and systemic racism.
So we’re building together a curriculum with 3 inter-woven themes. They are liberation of the:
- Our collective spirit
These three themes correspond to the three classrooms in our Freedom School, and are inter-connected like the three rings above. They also ground us as we develop our curriculum together as a community, always aiming to ask, and answer, questions that explore our relationships to ourselves, our history, and each other.
Hands-on, relevant and useful explorations are always preferred over theoretical, overly-academic studies. That’s why we’ll be partnering with many different community groups to better understand the strengths of our community when we unite. We’ll also be focusing extensively on our food system, and how we can reclaim it to reduce our dependency on systems outside of our communities to maintain good health.
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