The annual Ruby Bridges Walk, a nationwide celebration honoring American civil rights activist Ruby Bridges, has found a new home at Nosotros Academy. Today marked the academy’s first-ever walk in her honor, with about 100 students marching 1.1 miles to pay tribute to Bridges and her historic contributions.

Carmen Hernndez, counselor at Nosotros Academy, emphasized the significance of Ruby Bridges’ legacy. In 1960, Bridges became the first African American child to integrate into an all-white elementary school, a pivotal moment in the history of the civil rights movement.

“At a very young age, she decided to take a class and decided that she was going to be the first to walk, and it opened doors for so many kids,” said Hernndez, reflecting on Bridges’ courage and determination.

Bridges, who walked to school at the young age of 6, required protection from federal marshals due to the racially charged atmosphere of the time. Today, schools across the country commemorate her bravery through organized walks.

“We’re trying to teach that to our students,” stated Hernndez, highlighting the character and values demonstrated by Bridges at a young age.

Counselor Carmen Hernndez noted that while many Tucson schools do not observe this event, she emphasized its importance. “I want all the students to learn more about our history. We don’t have to wait until February to learn about African-American history or any other type of histories. It has to be done year-round,” she explained.

Participation in the Ruby Bridges Walk provides students with a deeper understanding of the historical significance of Bridges’ actions. Nosotros Academy students expressed the impact of this experience on their awareness of history and social issues.

“Ruby Bridges did so many things, and she changed history,” said Lyric Gonzles, a student at Nosotros Academy.

Fellow student Mateo Alvarez added, “There would still be racism around schools.”

This inaugural walk at Nosotros Academy is set to become an annual tradition, with Carmen Hernndez confirming that they plan to continue honoring Ruby Bridges and her legacy each year.