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Commemorating Juneteenth Education in More Than 50 Local Schools, Forum Philly Celebrates with Penn Museum

May 19, 2023

Jill DiSanto, Public Relations Director


PHILADELPHIA—Forum Philly, in partnership with the Penn Museum, will present a Juneteenth Honors Program and Reception commemorating the launch of its 2023 Juneteenth Schools Initiative (23JSI) across 50+ schools. The program will take place at the Penn Museum on Monday, June 19, 2023, from 5:00-8:00 pm.

Forum Philly partnered with school districts across Philadelphia, William Penn, Chester Upland, and Southeast Delco schools, as well as local organizations, to build peer-ideated and historically accurate educational initiatives around Juneteenth, as part of 23JSI. Classroom instruction and learning assemblies about Juneteenth—designed by students and supervised by faculty—will take place in more than 50 public, charter, and faith-based K-12 schools in the final weeks of the academic year.

This initiative is proudly sponsored by Delaware County, Penn Museum, Quoin Advisors, PNC Bank, Aqua Pennsylvania, and The Philadelphia Foundation.

“This is an unprecedented best practice made possible by sponsors and collaborators to inspire school-based leadership and build capacity through need-based small grant awards to local School Districts and schools,” says Dr. Malcolm T. Byrd, Founding President of Forum Philly and a member of the Penn Museum’s Community Advisory Group, which advocates for community-informed partnerships like this educational program. “Additionally, collaborators appreciate that the painful historical realities afford students opportunities to learn, understand and embrace essential civic values [freedom, liberty, dignity, relentless civility and perseverance over injustice], needed for equitable democracy to thrive in America.”

The culmination of Forum Philly’s annual Juneteenth School Initiative (23JSI), the Honors Program and Reception will showcase student-created instructional posters, essays and artistic responses, such as dance, poetry and literary readings.

“Penn Museum is honored to join Forum Philly in advancing education about Juneteenth across K-12 schools,” says Dr. Christopher Woods, Williams Director of the Penn Museum. “Our programs are designed to provide a welcoming, inclusive space for young people to share their ideas and experiences. It will be fascinating to see how students share the significance of Juneteenth, one of the most important dates in our nation’s history.”

The Juneteenth Honors Program and Reception is free and will welcome 200 invited guests from select school districts, sponsors, leaders in the public sphere, along with civic and religious organizations who work with Forum Philly and the Penn Museum. Access to the Museum’s galleries is included.

Additional donors of this initiative include: United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, Laura Kind McKenna, Friends of Sen. Tim Kearney, and the Gordon Policy Group.


About the Penn Museum
The Penn Museum’s mission is to be a center for inquiry and the ongoing exploration of humanity for our University of Pennsylvania, regional, national, and global communities, following ethical standards and practices.

Through conducting research, stewarding collections, creating learning opportunities, sharing stories, and creating experiences that expand access to archaeology and anthropology, the Museum builds empathy and connections across diverse cultures

The Penn Museum is open Tuesday-Sunday, 10:00 am-5:00 pm. It is open until 8:00 pm on first Wednesdays of the month. The Café is open Tuesday-Thursday, 9:00 am-3:00 pm and Friday and Saturday, 10:00 am-3:00 pm. On Sundays, the Café is open 10:30 am-2:30 pm. For information, visit, call 215.898.4000, or follow @PennMuseum on social media.

Yahne’ A. Jackson, Owner & Publicist, publiSISgrind, 484-430-1347

Jill DiSanto, Public Relations Director, Penn Museum, 215-898-2956

Established in 2019, the Philadelphia Forum for Faith, Law, and Civics (Forum Philly) promotes the spiritual wellness, economic viability, civic interests, social stability, and political equity of Afri-canAmericans through its work under the leadership of its Founding President and Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Malcolm T. Byrd.