Established in December 2022, the association was formed through a partnership between the Muhammad Ali Center, Berea College, Kentucky State University and the Thomas D. Clark Foundation. On Wednesday, Cummings plans to celebrate the start of Black History Month at the Ali Center, meeting with Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman and Jefferson County Public Schools Superintendent Marty Pollio to share more about the association’s mission.
The association’s formation comes at a time when teaching Black history has been opposed in some communities. Last month Florida’s Department of Education blocked an Advanced Placement course on African American studies from being taught in its public schools, saying it is “inexplicably contrary” to Florida law and “significantly lacks educational value.”
“Continuing to improve education in the Commonwealth to reflect the complexities of current events and their historical context is critical and should include awareness of the Black experience in Kentucky,” a release from the Ali Center about Wednesday’s event stated.
The association has launched a website where teachers can find lesson plans focused on Black history that align with the state’s mandated standards, and it is forming an advisory committee of educators to build upon the association’s collaboration with Kentucky teachers.