Newscaster Roberts celebrates rich heritage with Sixth Ward kids

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 23, 2000

DANIEL TYLER GOODEN / L’Observateur / February 23, 2000

ST. JAMES – “I’m here to share with you a message,” said Sally-Ann Roberts,reporter for WWL Channel 4, New Orleans. Sixth Ward Elementary sat quietlyfocused on the captivating speaker.

“She is such a dynamic speaker,” said Superintendent Ed Cancienne.

“Celebrating a Rich Heritage: Learning from the Past to Improve the Future” was the theme of Sixth Ward’s recent Black History Month program. Thechildren put on a set of performances that stirred the audience, with dance, song and a skit of Harriet Tubman’s journey along the Underground Railroad.

Roberts came forward to speak with the children and share her understanding of success and the commonality between the children and their heroes.

“They started out just like you, a child,” said Roberts. She gave her three-point message, sketching out the path to success.

First, “you must start with a decision. In playing the game of life you have tohave a goal to shoot for.” Make that decision to succeed, said Roberts.Second, Do the work, “pay now and play later. Take pride in doing it right.”Roberts stressed that one must have discipline in order to take control of one’s life.

Third, she said, “Study and pray every day and you will succeed in every way.” She explained that everything she did was with the help of God.Roberts told of her family’s struggle and how with the help of God her mother and her siblings rose above expectations to succeed in the world.

Roberts finished with instructing the adults in the audience to remember, “when you touch the life of a child, you touch the life of everyone around them.”Principal Judy Ezidore presented gifts to thank Roberts, saying, “We are blessed by your efforts, we are blessed by your presence and we are blessed just to have you in the building.” Cancienne thanked Roberts, praising herdevotion to her family. He continued with praise for Ezidore and the school bycalling them champions.

“It starts with Principal Ezidore and runs through the school like a river,” he said.

The program ended with everyone singing “We Shall Overcome.”Ezidore closed the ceremony reminding the audience, “We have a rich heritage. Be proud of how who are and celebrate who you are every day, notjust in February.”

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