Morgan Blakey, Black Student Alliance co-founder, co-president and senior
What goes on at a typical Black Student Alliance meeting?
We usually start off by introducing ourselves to get to know each other and then we also have activities like games that involve black culture such as black jeopardy and just do things that surround black culture. Additionally in February we help to make posters and more fun activities to celebrate Black History Month. Also, (at the meetings), we come up with ideas for outings or community service projects or something like that.Lastly we have group discussions about issues that we as black students face in our lives.
What kind of outings does Black Student Alliance do?
We went to the Black Student Summit last year and it was pretty fun and we got to learn about leadership and putting that into black students. Also, we’ve (attended) a lot of protests this summer and went to rallies.We are looking forward to doing more outings in the future to create unity among Black students.
What are Black Student Alliance’s goals?
One of our main goals is to motivate people at our schools to educate themselves about black culture. Another thing we hope to accomplish through our club is to provide a safe space for black students to come together and talk about any grievances they have at CHS or outside of it. We are trying to help black students assert dignity in themselves and provide leadership and also just inspire them to find their voices.This a club that is meant for all black students no matter what.
What direction do you see Black Student Alliance heading in/ what do you see in Black Student Alliance’s future?
With all the Black Lives Matter protests going on right now, I see our club participating in that but (protesting) will not take over our whole club. Hopefully, we head towards doing more community service, going to more protests, and also helping get the school to be more accepting to people of color.
Is Black Student Alliance working with the administration to bring reforms to make CHS more accepting and diverse to people of color? If so, how?
The Black Student Alliance has been involved by writing a list of things we want to see in the school put out. For example, we want to see more teaching for black history in history classrooms but also every classroom such as science, english or math. Also, we want to see more respect for black women and their hair. Additionally, we want the administration to become more aware of racist behavior that persists in our school system.
Is Black Student Alliance on any form of social media?
Yeah, we are on instagram @chs_blackstudentalliance
Do you think the club will change at all moving forward in light of an increase in attention to the Black Lives Matter movement?
For sure. I think that more people are becoming aware of what is going on and I think that it might make more people like ‘oh, I might need to do something about this’ and more people are going to step up and if that happens our club wants to help and lead that. Also, this year we have a lot of ideas this year that we want to execute that will help with the Black Lives Matter movement such as having speakers who are a part of local chapter for Black Lives Matter come in and speak with us. Recently, we’ve been going to more rallies and begun speaking at them especially so that’s something I see us doing more
If a student wanted to become involved with Black Student Alliance, how would they go about doing that?
Just come on in to any meeting, located in Room E212, right after school. Since this year will be weird with COVID-19, just look out for more information on our Instagram account.
Is there anything else I haven’t asked you that you would like readers to know?
This club is a safe space and there is no judgement.We want people who join this club to know that your opinions are valid and that this is a space for you to discuss your experience without facing criticism. As Black students our voices matter and we deserve to be heard. Additionally we are helping our school to reform its policies on racial equity, and would love to hear more people’s opinions on what action they want to see Carmel High School take on this topic.