DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) — It is Hispanic Heritage Month and one local elementary school is taking celebrations seriously.
Over half of Austinville Elementary School’s student population is Hispanic. Students there tell me it gives them a sense of pride to share their cultures with friends at school.
“This is from all of the Hispanic cultures that we currently have at the school,” said Jennifer Bolorin, an English language teacher at Austinville. “We have kids from that are Salvadorian we have kids that are from Honduras, Puerto Rico, Mexico, a lot of kids from Guatemala, and it’s very nice to see them interact and say oh, this is what we do in our culture.”
The elementary school is taking Hispanic Heritage Month celebrations to the next level — with a committee to make it all happen.
“The first week we broke piñatas, the second week the hot chocolate thing,” said Jonathan Barajas, a fourth-grader at Austinville.
Barajas moved to Decatur from Mexico in first grade. He says he likes sharing his culture with friends at school.
“We’re going to have a parade!” said Barajas. “The parade is going to be about Hispanic Heritage Month.”
Students will wear attire from their native country which Jonathan says makes him feel one way… “Proud, very proud!”
Bolorin says she also sees the value in celebration.
“I actually learned about Hispanic Heritage Month when I came to Decatur City Schools,” she said. “I actually lived in Puerto Rico for many years and once I came here I saw how we had the need of celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month.”
And at Austinville Elementary, Bolorin says the celebrations are family focused.
“Our parents have been so gracious and bring plates of food so we can learn about you know their culture and what they tend to eat and have at home,” Bolorin stated.
Which she says is a good educational experience for teachers and students who are not Hispanic.
“I think it’s really nice to have teachers understand the culture a little bit more based on our celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month and what our parents bring to the table at school,” she concluded.
National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated each year from September 15 to October 15.