Lucy Laney students honor Black History Month

KARE 11 and students from Lucy Laney are proud to honor Black History Month.

MINNEAPOLIS - KARE 11 and Lucy Craft Laney Community School are honoring Black History Month with a series of public service announcements. The kids from the school share their role models and why they are proud of themselves and their school.

American civil rights leader Martin Luther King (1929 - 1968) addresses crowds during the March On Washington at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington DC, where he gave his 'I Have A Dream' speech. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

KARE 11's Lindsey Seavert and Ben Garvin are following the students and staff from this remarkable north Minneapolis school for a year.

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Ninety percent of Lucy Laney students live in poverty. But under the leadership of the school's principal Mauri Friestleben, there came a long-awaited shift. Lucy Laney is now celebrating three consecutive years of gaining on the state's standardized tests. At the same time Minnesota, as a whole continues to struggle to make similar strides with children of color in other schools.

Lucy Craft Laney is an inspiration to the kids her namesake school. Ms. Laney was a pioneer in education for black students. She was born in Georgia in 1854. She was a member of the first graduating class of Atlanta University in 1873. She created the first kindergarten for black children in Augusta, and one of the first in the South. She continued to fight for better education for boys and girls of color throughout her life.