9-11: Teaching History; California, two different approaches

Today is the 8th anniversay of the 9-11 attack and it has been over five years since the Commission published its report.  Since that time (August, 2004) I have run a continuous Google Alert, “9-11 Commission,” to monitor news and commentary on events of that day. Yesterday, September 10, 2009, an alert popped up in my queue which prompted me to address the subject of teaching the history of 9-11.

In this Google alert. The author, Zach Milners, speaks to a program named the “September 11th Education Program: A National Interdisciplinary Curriculum, provid[ing] seven lesson plans, which can be taught as independent lessons or as a semester-long course of study. A website [is] devoted to the program, learnabout9-11.org.”

This morning, on the front page above the fold, the Washington Post featured an article by Eli Saslow titled; “9/11 as a Lesson, Not a Memory.”   The article also refers to the National Interdisciplinary Curriculum and lists six high schools among those across the nation piloting the curriculum.  One high school listed is Hollywood High School, Los Angeles, California.

Yesterday my Google alert also surfaced this article.  The author, Carl Herman, states he is a “teacher of high school US History courses.”  A Google search indicates he is most likely employed by La Canada Unified School District, La Canada, California.  His approach is different as the article title suggests: “Who are 9/11 Truthers? What is the 9/11 Truth Movement?”

Presumably, the California Department of Education realizes the two quite different approaches at two different California high schools and will monitor and report on the progress of each.