PLYMOUTH, Mich. (WXYZ) - A decade after the 9-11 terror attacks, the emotionally and politically charged history is difficult for adults to understand, but it’s a different struggle for teachers who find themselves writing history as they teach.
Educators in the Plymouth-Canton School District are working with teachers to ensure lesson plans are culturally sensitive, but still teach students about the difficult times America faced in the days, weeks, months and years that followed. “We’re talking with teachers about have a little discomfort and saying yes, these are really sensitive issues, but you do students a disservice when you pretend they don’t exist at all,” said Rachel Goldberg, a librarian at East Middle School.
Goldberg is providing teachers with online resources to offer multiple viewpoints on how the tragedy unfolded, but she believes an important component of learning involves students and the questions they have. While she encourages teachers to allow students to lead the discussion, she warns some guidelines should be established. “Mak(e) sure that you’ve set the stage for a space that is safe, and free of any sort of racism, hatred, prejudice,” Goldberg said.
Nearby at Farrand Elementary, the discussion is a far less graphic. Principal Troy Reehl began the school year with a moment of silence for the victims and families of 9-11. “I hope that every day when you see this flag flying somewhere, you will think about the families impacted on 9-11,” Reehl told his students before raising the American flag.
While teachers are planning on lessons for their classes, the Plymouth-Canton Schools does not have a district-wide event scheduled.
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