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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Saur September 3, 2021

Preserving History for the Persistent Legacy of Our School: A Youth-Led Participatory Heritage Project

Ayana Allen-Handy, Alysha Meloche, Jahyonna Brown, Ayanna Frazier, Karena Escalante, Marie Walker, Isaiah Burns, Nehemiah Edwards-Chapman, Qudia Ervin, Anna Thomas, Melissa Thomas, Iminie Wortham, Destiny Bugg and Janel Dia

Abstract

This in-process project report describes a critical youth-led participatory heritage project that seeks to document, preserve, and make digitally accessible oral histories, archives, and artifacts of an urban, predominantly African American high school with a rich history and legacy. As a long-standing community institution, the narratives emerging from this high school are intricately connected with the larger story of the city of Philadelphia. This article uses an equity-based lens to demonstrate how youth-led participatory heritage can contribute to youth empowerment, critical consciousness development, and critical digital literacies. Implications for schools and communities experiencing gentrification, displacement, and community change are provided, including how participatory heritage with youth can utilize collaborative, asset-based efforts to foster change that allows youth and communities to have agency over their individual and collective stories, community history and legacy, and their futures.


Corresponding author: Alysha Meloche, School of Education, Drexel University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, E-mail:

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Published Online: 2021-09-03
Published in Print: 2021-04-27

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