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WSFA’s Tonya Terry addresses TES in Black History program

KRISTINA VISE

The Troy Elementary School cafeteria served up more than just lunch Friday.

Guest speaker Tonya Terry, anchor of WSFA 12’s “Today in Alabama” and the “News at Noon,” took the stage in the lunchroom to share information about Black History Month with the students at their annual program.

The program began with a series of skits performed by Ms. Berry’s 5th grade class, Ms. Scott’s 2nd grade class and Ms. Robinson’s 2nd grade class.

The students acted out scenes and gave background information about important events from the Civil Rights Movement, like the story of Ruby Bridges, one of the first black children to attend an all white school in 1960.

“See, the people of black history are children just like you,” Terry told her audience.

“Everyday, we live out black history,” she said, “and the month of February lets us remember special times from that history.”

“We have to create our own history too. For example, I was the first black person to anchor the morning news program at WSFA,” Terry said. “That is how I created my own black history, and it’s something you can do too.”

Terry encouraged all of the children by remembering her elementary school years in Troy and sharing times when she felt special.

Whether it was the time she taught herself to write in cursive or the time she learned the Alabama state song, “my teachers always made me feel special, and I know your teachers still do that too,” she said.

“You can all do anything you want to do,” she said. “Just remember to listen to all the things your teachers and parents teach you. I use the skills I learned in school, like reading and writing, at my job every day.”

The students at Troy Elementary, students from every race, all heard Terry’s main message. “We all have to live in this world together,” Terry said.

The school has the Black History Month Program every year. “It is a time for the students to enhance their knowledge of black history,” said Assistant Principal Thomas. “It is a time of appreciation.”