Hall of Fame basketball player, Emmy Award winning studio analyst, and author Charles Barkley, along with leading education technology provider EVERFI, Inc., today announced a partnership to power a new African-American history initiative for high school students throughout the states of Alabama and Mississippi.
The course will engage tens of thousands of students in the Mississippi Delta region, which includes Barkley’s hometown of Leeds, Alabama, all at no cost to students, their schools or school districts. Additionally, as part of this new partnership, Charles’s production company Round Mound Media will create short-form filmed documentary content for the 306 course, in conjunction with Los Angeles-based creative and production agency Wondros, designed for students to further explore key moments and topics in specific to their states, beginning with Alabama.
“I was born and raised in rural Alabama at the dawn of the Civil Rights era, and I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to American heroes like Medgar Evers, John Lewis, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ,” said Charles Barkley. “Every child in my home state should have the keys to knowledge of their history so they can achieve great things in their own lives. This initiative helps accomplish that.”
The 306: African-American History digital course immerses students in a journey in which they learn about the incredible contributions that African-Americans have made in every fabric of American life including public service, the sciences, academia, and the world of the arts, music, and sports. The course is framed to teach the importance of civic engagement so that students develop into future community leaders.
EVERFI administered survey questions to students across 28 states who took EVERFI’s 306 — African-American History course and discovered the students who think learning about African-American history is important are also more likely to say they intend to vote.
“Even in today’s advanced technological world, it’s rare that teachers have the adequate tools to bring to life the stories of pride, perseverance, and leadership that are so prevalent throughout African-American history,” said EVERFI CEO Tom Davidson. “We’re incredibly excited to work with Charles to offer this digital initiative that makes African-American history readily accessible and allows students in the Mississippi Delta to reimagine how they see themselves through the lens of history.”
Since it’s development, EVERFI’s 306 -African American History course has already reached nearly 100,000 students across the country, including over 17,000 in Alabama and Mississippi. The online course is filled with stories of inspirational civic leaders that overcame adversity to make contributions to society both then and now. These inspirational stories, shared through influential primary texts and compelling vignettes, build shared values and teach youth the importance of active citizenship.