Interview with Ellen Jackson
QUESTION 13
JACKIE SHEARER:

Now I want you to think and tell me why education, why is education important enough for Black kids that you went through all this?

ELLEN JACKSON:

I think throughout history it's the one, I don't want to call it "out" of poverty and ignorance, ah, but it was the one entity within this country that has always been highly touted as a way that you can be somebody. Ah, that you can contribute. That you can be recognized. And that you also can teach others and bring others along with you. Ah, it's supposed to be a way for you to join the main economic stream of the United States and of America. And it's supposed to be a way that you, as I said, give back. I think though for Black people, it's always been an acceptable, respectable way to be again somebody. It's our way, ah, and we've been told this and we believe it, ah, that if we are not to be considered second class citizens, and we're not be considered chattel or whatever, that we must gain an education in order to survive, if nothing else, but to also, will be able to make significant contributions, ah, to our country. I think also that it's a way in. It's not a way out for Black people. It's a way in to these areas. It's a way again, to come back and revitalize and to have a renaissance of sorts within our own communities and neighborhoods. To bring new vision and new hope ah to others because we're very proud of people in our community who go off and do things. We're proud as any other people are to call them our home people and to call them our, our neighbors. And to call them our own. It's very important to us. And I think that with all of that we see our selves as major contributors to the society, to the future of this world, ah, and in our way, education is the first, ah, step to do that.

JACKIE SHEARER:

OK thank you