Elizabeth Daigneau is GOVERNING's managing editor.E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Victims' families unveil a plan to teach middle and high school students about the 2001 terrorist attacks.
It has been eight years since the September 11 terrorist attacks, and many of the students entering middle and high school were too young to have strong memories of the attacks. To develop a connection to the event and help students think critically about the attacks as both a historical event and one that shapes the present, victims' families, survivors and first responders worked with professors to develop an educational plan focusing on the 2001 attacks. The 9/11 curriculum, believed to be one of the most comprehensive educational plans of its kind, is being piloted this year at schools in New York City, California, New Jersey, Alabama, Indiana, Illinois and Kansas. Taught through videos, lessons and interactive exercises, the curriculum is based on primary sources that include archival footage and more than 70 interviews with witnesses, victims' family members and politicians. A Web site has been developed around the curriculum so teachers can share their own lesson plans and discuss questions raised in classrooms. Overseen by the nonprofit September 11th Education Trust, the plan costs $99 per license through Sept. 18. After that, it will cost $129. The National September 11 Memorial & Museum has also developed educational materials, which are intended to augment classroom discussions.