Afrocentric Children and Youth

Saturday School Program


As a native of Oakland, California, and a product of the Oakland Unified School District’s (OUSD) educational system and a mother of children who were students of that system, I am aware of the strengths and weaknesses of this system. As a native of the OUSD system, I remember reading about American history and the building of it, and how rarely were there images of Africans or Black Americans shown.

When it came to images of people with the same complexion, the same hair texture, the same thick lips, the same broad nose, as my family, my friends and myself, there were many images of people of African descent with these features that were considered to be savages, primitives, and uncivilized. The rare images that I did observe and appreciate were of a few: Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglass, George Washington Carver, and Dr. Martin Luther King., Jr.

I remember often wondering as a child, “Were there only a handful of people with the same features as me that made significant contributions to society?”

Having this mental dilemma at such an early and impressionable age, could and would have a lasting impact on my self-identity, my self-worth, and where I would fit in society – Where would I receive education that paced my heritage and culture at the center of my education. Where African Americans would be viewed as subjects and not as objects in worldview, as Victors and not Victims?

Historically, the U.S. educational system has been culturally centered on a Eurocentric worldview, not taking into account the various ethnicities and cultures that have existed in class setting, specifically Africans and Blacks. They have consistently and intentionally lacked cultural relevancy and sensitivity. Despite the overwhelming research on the significance of teaching that is culturally relevant, African American children are today still subjected to an education which does not reflect their heritage, culture and life experiences. Dr. Carter G. Woodson, Father of Black History (933) wrote in his critical acclaimed novel, “The Mis-Education of the Negro”, that African Americans have been disenfranchised educationally in the United States. One of Dr. Woodson’s most notable quotes that still holds true today,

If a race has no history, if it has no worthwhile tradition, it becomes a negligible factor in the thought of the world, and it stands in danger of being exterminated.

 Dr. Jacob Carruthers (1995) argued that African American students have suffered from the pervading negative images of African people of whom they are descendants. He states that, “One would expect that improving the image of one’s social or ethnic group would have a positive effect on one’s self-image.” 

According to Dr. Molefi Asante, a major proponent of Afrocentric Ideal, children who are centered in their own cultural information are better students; ore disciplined and have greater motivation for schoolwork. 

Afrocentric Education is a response to the chronic failure of the educational system to provide equal and inclusive educational opportunities for African Americans. More importantly there should be a cultural shift in the educational system that reflects all cultures, not just the Eurocentric dominant culture. 

My name is Cynthia Chinue X Cornelius. I hold Bachelors in Africana Studies and a Masters in Equity and Social Justice in Education both obtained from San Francisco State University. I am establishing the TCXPI Afrocentric Children and Youth Saturday School Program. This free program will be offered as a non-traditional school program to children of all ages and will consist of a variety of Afrocentric activities and discussions that will directly relate to the African heritage and culture beginning with Kemet (better known as Egypt) and ending with today. Those activities will include field trips of nearby libraries, museums, local events, and student-based projects. All of the activities will acknowledge the contributions of Africans and Blacks to World and Human civilization.

By studying and discussing these contributions of the Ancestors, our goal is to bring about a Spirit of Self-Love, Self-Respect, and Self-Love within each student, and to develop in each student a need to seek and research independently Black History.

The Saturday School Program will run for 6 weeks, meeting each Saturday from 9-12pm. The first session will begin Saturday, January 16th at Impact Hub Oakland. Each subsequent session will begin in April, July, and October. In addition to the aforementioned activities, there will also be guest speakers who will present on various subject matters. Each activity will be engaging for all involved.

The Chinue X Project, Inc. is currently campaigning for funding in order to make this program a SUCCESS.

We can no longer afford to sit by while Black history is being omitted and distorted to suit others. It is time that we SPEAK OUT against and Do Something about the racist and discriminatory education our children receive.

PLEASE help TCXPI make this program a SUCCESS for our future leaders. Donate Today! TCXPI Free Afrocentric SSP

The Chinue X Project, Inc. seeks to bring education and awareness of Black History and the many contributions of Africans, African-Americans, and Blacks to world and human civilization. If you would like to experience more of TCXPI, please visit