Schools Plan to Mark This Sept. 11 Differently Most Won't Dwell on Attacks, Will Study Event within Curricula
Kunz, Tona, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: Tona Kunz Daily Herald Staff Writer
As the second anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks approaches, teachers are focusing more on academics than emotion.
Gone are the memorials, assemblies and tree plantings.
In fact, all but a few schools will treat the day no differently from any other.
"We won't go nutso with it," said Michael Smoot, Wood Dale Elementary District 7 superintendent. "It's a political issue that is only becoming more political by the day."
Students will spend between 10 and 45 minutes discussing the attacks as a new chapter in American history.
Students in Villa Park will hold a moment of silence for those who lost their lives and then get back to the basics of reading, writing and arithmetic.
Educators say the attacks have been incorporated into curricula where it makes sense and they think that's the best way to handle the tragedy without dwelling on it.
Teachers are free to bring up the anniversary using newspaper clippings and recordings of President Bush's speeches to stir conversation, but that isn't mandatory or expected.
That's exactly the right approach, said Kathy Cowen, spokesman for the National Association of School Psychologists.
"We wouldn't recommend teachers spend a lot of time talking about this event unless there is a special reason," she said. …