Training for Early Childhood Educators features Gov. Lewis
Gila River Indian News
On Nov. 3, the Arizona Head Start Association, in partnership with the Head Start Collaboration office and the Arizona Association for the Education of Young Children (AzAEYC), hosted an inclusive training for early childhood educators.
This training was based on the film screening of “Black Boys,” a documentary that illuminates the full humanity of boys and men of color in America. Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis attended the event and delivered a speech in support of the training, as it centered around topics of diversity and equity.
“There are many obstacles our children face currently: socio-political issues, drugs, and crime. Coming together and looking for innovative ways to work together, there’s hope. I see hope in the movie.Hope catalyzes great movements, but sometimes great movements start with a simple step forward,” said Gov. Lewis to childcare workers, early childhood teachers, parents of young children, and community champions.
The documentary addresses the dehumanization of boys and men of color in America. However, its aim is to reverse the systemic partialness of boys and men of color by reconstructing their minds, bodies, voices, and hearts. The goal is to show boys and men of color that they are worth the care and respect they are systemically denied. The idea of the training was to provide the film and then have participants reflect on the topic, allowing room for a panel of discussions around equity in the classroom and surrounding communities.
Lisa Wilson, Director of Equity and Outreach for Zero to Three and a panelist for the “Black Boys” practice, stated that childhood educators tackled all four topics of mind, body, voice, and heart. They collectively discussed that being impartial in classrooms and the community centered around the components of love.
This included elements of encouraging courageousness in the classroom, having proper representation for people of color in their learning environments, and connecting with surrounding communities. They also emphasized being dream makers for all children, assisting them to have the agency to self-actualize.
The documentary “Black Boys” is streaming on Tubi, Amazon Prime Video, and Apple TV.