Why did we launch a new school in the middle of a pandemic?

African History Project - Black Woman Studying

The middle of a global health crisis, and one in which the education sector has been rocked like never before, seems like an odd time to launch a new school, and a highly specialised one at that. 

Add to this the growing financial crisis at London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, now known as SOAS, as well as the funding crisis at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies within the University of London, and any betting woman would tell you to steer clear of Africa-focused liberal arts education at this time. Yet we decided to do the complete opposite.

Why have we made such a daring gamble?

Historical and cultural education has long been the (unofficial) next step for us as educators. Our main motivation in launching the African History Project was the desire to establish a world class institution that:

  • – teaches Black histories in a progressive, equitable and conscious way;
  • – provides high-quality continuing professional development and consultancy to schools looking to enhance their Black history provision;
  • – makes use of EdTech and the increased access to online digital archives in order to democratise the teaching of Black histories.

We felt that such an institution did not exist and was desperately needed. 

Young people are making more demands for access to de-colonised histories that value the contributions of all peoples to the development of human knowledge. 

There is a genuine desire by people to explore Black narratives

We genuinely believe that in the African History Project can be found the foundations of a major educational institution that will revolutionise Black history teaching both in diaspora and on the continent.

Since we took our first tentative steps into the world in June 2020, we have been overwhelmed by the level of interest we have seen. There is a genuine desire by people to explore Black narratives, engage in education and enhance their thinking about the peoples and events of our past. 

As an institution we are young, but our passion is seasoned. 

We are a growing, mission driven and student focused educational institution beginning our journey to make a mark in Black history education in the UK and around the world.

We really hope that as a many people as possible come with us on this journey, both as professionals and as participants in our programmes. 

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