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Lancaster ISD to hold 4th Annual Black History Bowl Competition

Lancaster, TX/Lancaster ISD – On Saturday, February 18, Lancaster ISD will host its 4th Lancaster ISD Black History Academic competition at 9 AM, in the Lancaster High School Auditorium located at 200 E. Wintergreen Road in Lancaster, Texas.

This Black History Bowl competition will feature 17 junior division teams and 8 senior division teams competing to show their knowledge of Black history and culture. The contest will not only celebrate the achievements of African Americans, but extends beyond the borders and across the globe.

The goal of this community event is to increase exposure and raise awareness of the Black culture and heritage in the community and schools. Lancaster ISD Coordinator of External Communications and Public Relations, Kimberly Simpson, who is managing this event, explained this year’s focus.

“The theme this year is simply, ‘Education Matters’”, she said. “In Lancaster ISD, we are focused on the education of all of our students and earnestly believe that it is the key to their ability to create their own success.”

In addition to the academic bowl, about 40 students in elementary, middle and high school will celebrate black history and culture through the visual artwork display and contest. The student winners will be selected by Lancaster ISD school board members and announced at the close of the event.

New to this event year, is the W.E.B. DuBois Essay Contest and Lancaster Middle School History Teacher Julian Tenorio is overseeing this aspect of the day’s event. As a history teacher, he is anticipating the opportunity to see the students’ perspectives on Black history and the Black experience.

“The student essays will focus on highlighting the contributions that African-Americans have made to society as a whole and make the connection of historical events to current events to aid the understanding that history has a tendency to repeat itself,” he said.

Students have received writing prompts addressing the Black Lives Matter movement, social change, key innovations by African Americans, comparative analysis of historical figures and other topics. The entries will be scored with a STAAR-styled rubric prior to the event and the winners of each category will share their essay during the academic bowl.

Tenorio emphasized that, “writing is a skill that incorporates higher order thinking skills and demonstrates true understanding and all students should understand, know and be able to point out the incredible and—many times unrecorded—achievements of African Americans.”

All of the winners of each competition will reconvene in this summer to attend a summer history field trip and tour as part of their reward.

Lancaster ISD Academic Consultant Connie Isabell, who brought this event to the district shared, “although the actual winners will be only a few students, everybody wins with the growth in their knowledge of Black history and culture.”

Parents, students and community members are all invited to attend the Black History academic competition, which is a free family event. For more information, please email HistoryBowl@LancasterISD.org.