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Black History Month Profile

Bill "Bojangles" Robinson

 
Bill “Bojangles” Robinson was a tap dancer and actor from 1878 through 1943, who was responsible for revolutionizing tap dancing and for bridging racial boundaries in the entertainment world of that time period. He was the best known and highest paid African-American entertainer in the first half of the 20th century.
 
Born in 1877 in Richmond, Virginia, Robinson was raised by his grandmother who was a former slave. He began dancing at a young age in local beer gardens and theaters for spare change. Over a period of years, and after a stint in the U.S. military, Robinson would eventually become the first African-American solo act in vaudeville, where he developed a unique style of tap dancing called “up on the toes.” In 1918, Robinson introduced the ground-breaking “Stair Dance” that would solidify his legacy as the “Father of Tapology.”
 
Robinson’s gift for entertainment appealed to a wide audience, regardless of race or social standing. He performed on Broadway in both African-American and white revues that were great successes. A talented actor as well as a dancer, Robinson was chosen to star with childhood actress Shirley Temple in a total of four films in the 1930s, where the couple became the first interracial dance partners in Hollywood history. The last movie appearance he made in a starring role, 1943’s “Stormy Weather,” has been selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress for its cultural and historical significance.
 
Bill Robinson was a courageous trail-blazer in the arena of dance and entertainment in the early 20th century, who transcended racial prejudice and barriers in ways that had never happened before. He mentored dancers Ann Miller, Sammy Davis Jr., among others. His legacy of courage, generosity, and love live on today.
 
 
 
COCISD parents and guardians may access students' grades and assignments by visiting the Parent Portal. For information on how to log into the Parent Portal, contact Counselor Angela Ballew at 936-653-1147.
 
If you need to update your phone number or email address to make sure you receive campus or district-wide notifications, contact the PEIMS/Attendance Clerk at 936-653-1190, or email chogland@cocisd.org.

Latest News

COCISD Child Nutrition Department earns Best of the Bunch Award

COCISD Child Nutrition Department earns Best of the Bunch Award Thumbnail Image
For the second year in a row, the COCISD Child Nutrition Department has earned Best of the Bunch in the Texas Department of Agriculture’s (TDA's) Local Products Challenge. The Local Products Challenge encourages school nutrition departments to incorporate more Texas products into meals, and to teach children about healthy lifestyles and Texas agriculture. The COCISD Child Nutrition team earned the award by meeting the highest standards of the challenge.

Black History Month Profile of the Week: Dr. Gladys West

Black History Month Profile of the Week: Dr. Gladys West Thumbnail Image
This week's Black History Month Profile features Dr. Gladys West, one of the "Hidden Figures" of our nation's space program, whose mathematical calculations resulted in the Global Positioning System (GPS) we use every day in the modern world.

Black History Month Profile of the Week: Charles Hamilton Houston

Black History Month Profile of the Week: Charles Hamilton Houston Thumbnail Image
In honor of Black History Month, each week in February we will feature profiles of courageous men and women who have impacted our nation and our world. This week tells the story of Charles Hamilton Houston (Sept. 3, 1895 - April 22, 1950), an attorney and law professor whose ground-breaking efforts ultimately resulted in the desegregation of American schools, among other major achievements.
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