COLUMBUS, Miss. (WTVA) - A high school in northeast Mississippi will be featured in an HBO documentary series.
The Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science (MSMS) has a class that undergoes a special project which caught the attention of big filmmakers.
“If they focus and learn the past, they can make a difference in shaping our future.”
Chuck Yarborough works as a history teacher at MSMS. One of his courses is African American Literature.
“For much of our history, the stories not been told completely,” he said.
To change that, Yarborough and his students created a semester-long project giving them an opportunity to research those buried in Sandfield Cemetery.
He calls the project the Eighth of May Emancipation Celebration.
Yarborough said the project gives students the opportunity to learn a more complete history of the county and the state, while teaching the public as well.
The project allows students to write scripts after intense research about each African American figure buried in the cemetery.
The uniqueness of the project caught the eye of HBO filmmakers.
“The students are all excited to be a part of this - to get the attention," said Yarborough, "but also to recognize that the work they’re doing for a class project has a broader impact. They love that.”
HBO came to film the 2019 performance.
After years of waiting, Yarborough said he's eager to see how the documentary turned out.
“If we can make a positive impact on young people in Columbus and in our classrooms here, we can make a positive impact on young people throughout the state of Mississippi.”
The documentary, Our Towns aired on Tuesday night at 8 P.M.