“Black Migrations”

See how our community celebrated Black History Month and this year’s theme, Black Migrations.

Mitchener Family migration story

Capital City families and staff shared their migration stories during our annual Black History Month celebration.
 

Read stories from our families here.

Shelton Lee

“My mother's family are the descendents of German slaves that moved first to Louisiana, then to Virginia, and finally settling in Georgia (the name 'Lavaga' is given to favored sons in my family, including my Grandfather and my own son, Risan Lavaga). My Grandma and Grandfather were sharecroppers. My mother is the youngest of 18 children (6 sets of twins!), and my aunts and uncles have been everything from servicemen to pilots to desegregationists.”
— Shelton Lee, High School English Teacher

Cynthia Dorsey

“My family migration started in Southern Africa. My family was separated during the transatlantic slave trade ending up in the Caribbean and America. My grandmother was raised in Alabama and migrated to Pittsburgh to work in her late teens. My mother migrated to Washington, DC in her early twenties. My father’s side of the family has strong roots here in DC as well. You can find my family in Pennsylvania, Florida, California,  Louisiana, Alabama, Massachusetts, New York and even abroad in the Middle East.”
— Cynthia Dorsey, Lower School Drama Teacher

Celebrations inside the classroom!

See how our staff celebrated Black History Month in the classroom. 

Makeda Smith

“We are reading ‘The Watsons Go To Birmingham-1963’ and watching videos of famous Black historical figures.” — Makeda Smith, 3rd Grade Inclusion Teacher

Sarah Cole

“Fifth graders are reading five historical fiction novels by black authors and discussing the novels in their weekly student-led book club talks. They are having meaningful conversations about family, perseverance, racial inequality, justice, and love centered on Black American experiences in different time periods.” — Sarah Cole, 5th grade Humanities Teacher

Kishanna Harley

“I created a board in the library highlighting all 60 paintings/panels of Jacob Lawrence's ‘Migration Series.’ Lawrence's paintings highlight the mass migration of African Americans moving from the rural South to the urban North between World War I and World War II.” — Kishana Harley, High School Librarian and Technology Teacher

Tonica Tatum-Gormes

“In advisory we are completing a challenge on Black STEM excellence.” — Tonica Tatum-Gormes, High School Math Teacher

Favorite Food

“Southern BBQ”
— Shelton Lee

“Chicken and dumplings”
— Kishana Harley

“Sweet Potato Pie”
— Makeda Smith

“Gumbo and tacos”
— Cynthia Dorsey

Favorite Music

"Lizz Wright, Jazz and Folk artist”
— Kishana Harley

“Hip Hop”
— Makeda Smith

“I love gospel, R&B, and Soul Music”
— Cynthia Dorsey

Favorite Writer

“James Baldwin & Zora Neale Hurston”
— Sarah Cole

“Zora Neale Hurston, James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, &  Beverly Jenkins”
— Kishanna Harley

“Langston Hughes”
— Cynthia Dorsey