BLACK CHILDREN EVERYWHERE NEED BLACK SCHOOLS TO TEACH THEM THE TRUE BLACK HISTORY AND TEACH THEM THAT THEY ARE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL CHILDREN IN THE WORLD!
About the Council of Independent Black Institutions (CIBI)
Founded in 1972, the Council of Independent Black Institutions (CIBI) is an umbrella organization for independent Afrikan-centered schools and individuals who are advocates for Afrikan-centered education. CIBI members are found primarily throughout the United States. Most of our institutional members are full-time Afrikan-centered independent schools. Our institutional membership also includes a number of part-time and supplementary schools. These schools enroll students at all levels from pre-kindergarten through secondary. The heaviest concentration, however, is at the elementary level.
CIBI activities include:
• Bi-annual conferences (in odd numbered years) designed to educate members of the Afrikan community about issues and prospects in Afrikan-centered education in general and specifically in CIBI. Unlike the convention, the conference is open to the public;
• Bi-annual conventions (in even numbered years) provide educators from CIBI schools and elsewhere opportunities to share information on curricula and other Afrikan centered education related matters. CIBI also installs its incoming Ndundu (leadership council) members during its convention;
• The Walimu Development Institute (WDI) attracts teachers in CIBI schools as well as CIBI home schools. CIBI also organizes intensive, on-site workshops for African-centered educators;
• Semi-annual publication of a newsletter, FUNDISHA! TEACH!, provides a forum for curriculum innovations, book reviews, news about member schools and other features pertaining to people of Afrikan ancestry.
• Annual Science Expositions held each year in April. During each Science Expo, children from the various member schools have an opportunity to display their science projects in a uniquely non-competitive environment in which they are evaluated according to criteria based upon the Nguzo Saba.
• A speakers’ bureau;
• An alumni association for graduates of CIBI institutions;
• Consultation and technical assistance to those operating or wishing to open independent Afrikan-centered schools. Services are also available to public and private schools or to any institution or group that serves children of Afrikan descent.
CIBI member contributions help make it possible to publish some of the outstanding Afrikan-centered curriculum materials that have been developed and used effectively over the years by teachers in institutions affiliated with CIBI as well as in other schools. CIBI’s social studies curriculum guide, Positive Afrikan Images for Children, published in 1990, is an example.
CIBI Mission Statement (Approved January 14, 1995)
Definition, Standards and Interpretations
• To define Afrikan-Centered Education
• To establish appropriate terminology, conditions, interpretations and standards consistent with the definition
• To vigorously promote the philosophy of Afrikan-centered education as defined by the organization
• To serve as the primary regional, national, and international spokesperson for the Afrikan- centered education movement and the institutions associated with that movement
• To establish Afrikan-centered standards and procedures for the certification of educational institutions, program, initiatives, organizations, etc.
• To establish Afrikan-centered standards and procedures for the certification of instructional and administrative personnel associated with educational institutions or programs
Curriculum Development and Standardization
• To develop and promote an Afrikan-centered curriculum philosophy
• To establish appropriate definitions and terminology associated with that philosophy
• To establish an Afrikan-centered curriculum design and methods for its implementation and evaluation
• To establish Afrikan-centered curricula for all ages (infancy through post-graduate levels) and in all subject areas
• To sponsor and/or facilitate the development of curriculum materials consistent with the design and content of Afrikan-centered curricula
Academic Performance Standards and Evaluation
• To establish academic performance standards consistent with the philosophy and design of the Afrikan-centered Curriculum
• To sponsor and/or facilitate the design of appropriate performance and diagnostic instruments, and procedures for the measurement of academic performance
• To establish standards and appropriate instruments for the evaluation of curriculum design and operations, instruction, and administration within Afrikan-centered educational institutions
National and International System Development and Coordination
• To facilitate the development and linkage of Afrikan-centered institutions world-wide through staff and student development programs, exchange programs, expositions, conventions, computer networking, bulk purchasing, joint investments and fundraising, etc.
• To establish designs, criteria, procedures, models, and necessary training\orientation programs that facilitate the development of viable institutions of Afrikan-centered education and culture.
• To serve as that administrative vehicle that coordinates the affairs of a national and international system of Afrikan-centered education.
CIBI’s Definition of Afrikan Centered Education: A Position Statement (Adopted November 11, 1994)
CIBI defines Afrikan-centered education as the means by which Afrikan culture — including the knowledge, attitudes, values and skills needed to maintain and perpetuate it throughout the nation building process — is developed and advanced through practice. Its aim, therefore, is to build commitment and competency within present and future generations to support the struggle for liberation and nationhood. We define nation building as the conscious and focused application of our people’s collective resources, energies, and knowledge to the task of liberating and developing the psychic and physical space that we identify as ours. Nation building encompasses both the reconstruction of Afrikan culture and the development of a progressive and sovereign state structure consistent with that culture.
We, in CIBI, further believe, that in practice, Afrikan-centered education:
1) acknowledges Afrikan spirituality as an essential aspect of our uniqueness as a people and makes it an instrument of our liberation (Richards, 1989; Clarke, 1991; Anwisye, 1993; Ani, 1994);
2) facilitates participation in the affairs of nations and defining (or redefining) reality on our own terms, in our own time and in our own interests (Karenga, 1980);
3) prepares Afrikans “for self-reliance, nation maintenance, and nation management in every regard” (Clarke, 1991, p. 62);
4) emphasizes the fundamental relationship between the strength of our families and the strength of our nation;
5) ensures that the historic role and function of the customs, traditions, rituals and ceremonies — that have protected and preserved our culture; facilitated our spiritual expression; ensured harmony in our social relations; prepared our people to meet their responsibilities as adult members of our culture; and sustained the continuity of Afrikan life over successive generations — are understood and made relevant to the challenges that confront us in our time;
6) emphasizes that Afrikan identity is embedded in the continuity of Afrikan cultural history and that Afrikan cultural history represents a distinct reality continually evolving from the experiences of all Afrikan people wherever they are and have been on the planet across time and generations;
7) focuses on the “knowledge and discovery of historical truths; through comparison; hypothesizing and testing through debate, trial, and application; through analysis and synthesis; through creative and critical thinking; through problem resolution processes; and through final evaluation and decision making”
(Akoto, 1992, p. 116);
8) can only be systematically facilitated by people who themselves are consciously engaged in the process of Afrikan-centered personal transformation;
9) is a process dependent upon human perception and interpretation [Thus, it follows that a curriculum can not be Afrikan-centered independent of our capacity to perceive and interpret it in an Afrikan-centered manner (Shujaa, 1992)];
10) embraces the traditional wisdom that “children are the reward of life” and it is, therefore, an expression of our unconditional love for them. In order to best serve Afrikan children our methods must reflect the best understandings that we have of how they develop and learn biologically, spiritually and culturally.
Akoto, K. A. (1992) Nation building: Theory and practice in Afrikan-centered education. Washington, DC: Pan- Afrikan World Institute.
Ani, M. (1994). Yurugu: An African-centered critique of European cultural thought and behavior. Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press.
Anwisye, S. (1993). Education is more than the three “R”s. Harvard Journal of African American Public Policy, 2, 97-101.
Clarke, J. H. (1991). African world revolution: Africans at the crossroads. Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press.
Karenga, M. (1980). Kawaida theory: An introductory outline. Inglewood, CA: Kawaida Publications.
Richards, D. M. (1989). Let the circle be unbroken: African spirituality in the diaspora. Trenton, NJ: The Red Sea Press. (originally published in 1980)
Shujaa, M. J. (1992). Afrocentric transformation and parental choice in African American independent schools. The Journal of Negro Education, (61)2, 148-159.
How CIBI Defines “Independent” As it Relates to the Fiscal Affairs of Independent Afrikan Centered Educational Institutions
An Afrikan-Centered educational institution is considered by CIBI to be “independent” in the context of its fiscal affairs, if:
a. The programmatic emphasis of the institution is directed toward nation building and the security of liberated space.
b. Pan-Afrikan nationalist interests determine institutional decisions about soliciting, accepting and investing funds.
c. The operational budget (i.e., that which includes the rent/lease/mortgage, payroll, utilities, kwk (etc.)) is funded primarily from sources within and controlled by the Pan-Afrikan community in order to ensure that the ability of the institution to maintain itself is contingent upon Afrikan people.