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County educators train for 9/11 curriculum

Teachers and administrators in Madison County Schools recently trained for curriculum that documents one of the United States’ darkest, most horrific days.

Madison County was among only a few districts in the nation to receive complimentary training for “September 11th Education Program: A National Interdisciplinary Curriculum” that covers the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Social Studies School Service chose Madison County as a training site because of the district’s continued emphasis on professional development.

Dr. Aaron Willis, chief education officer with Social Studies School Service, conducted the training. Willis previously taught cultural anthropology at Princeton University and has traveled extensively around the world in promoting technology in the classroom.

“September 11th Education Program” was developed by the September 11th Education Trust, an organization that includes relatives of 9/11 victims, survivors, rescue workers and educators in partnership with the Taft Institute for Government.

Their work affirms the chronology of 9/11 and its aftermath, Geraldine Tibbs said. Tibbs is director of communications/public relations for Madison County Schools.

First-hand accounts, filmed oral histories and authentic archives personalize the lesson plans. “The curriculum permanently records this shared historic event in a way that is inspiring and relevant to the nation’s youth,” Tibbs said. With the material, youth can understand the impact of the event and its place in American history.

The material opens with the 12-minute “Remembrance Presentation,” containing interviews with relatives of victims and an overview of the curriculum’s seven units.

The first disc opens with “Visualizing 9/11,” which features conversations with two on-the-spot photographers, then senator Hillary Clinton and survivor Brian Clark. A slideshow includes the unforgettable, ghastly image of a man falling to his death from the World Trade Center.

Disc two presents a timeline of the day’s events. Several video segments are tied to each significant moment. Then mayor Rudy Giuliani begins with his recollection of the beautiful, morning weather of Sept. 11. The day’s chronology continues with the first plane slamming into the North Tower at 8:46 a.m., the building’s collapse at 10:28 a.m. and reactions throughout the rest of the day.

With headquarters in Culver City, Calif., Social Studies School Service has been supplying high-quality educational titles for 40 years.

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