Investing in Facing History and Ourselves

Last updated 09/16/2021.

Facing History and Ourselves uses lessons of history to challenge teachers and their students to stand up to bigotry and hate. We believe the bigotry and hate that we witness today are the legacy of brutal injustices of the past. Facing our collective history and how it informs our attitudes and behaviors allows us to choose a world of equity and justice. Facing History’s resources address racism, antisemitism, and prejudice at pivotal moments in history; we help students connect choices made in the past to those they will confront in their own lives. Through our partnership with educators around the world, Facing History reaches millions of students in thousands of classrooms every year.

Independent research shows that Facing History classroom experience motivates students to become upstanders in their communities. Through rigorous historical analysis and a study of human behavior, students heighten their understanding of racism, religious intolerance, and prejudice; increase their ability to relate history to their own lives; and develop a greater understanding of their roles and responsibilities in a democracy.

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Your partnership helps create the next generation of leaders who will build a world based on knowledge and compassion, the foundation for a more democratic, equitable, and just society. One workshop can change the way that one teacher teaches 100 kids a year for the rest of their career. That’s a powerful return on investment.

What We Do

Much teacher training focuses on what to teach or how to teach it -- at Facing History, we do both. Facing History is also one of the only educational organizations in the country that integrates equity practices, social-emotional learning, and civics education into professional development for middle school and high school educators. We support educators to embed these strategies into their history, social studies, and English Language Arts curricula and teaching. We help teachers use content that explores students’ civic agency via historical and current events while using responsive and equitable practices to improve school culture and climate. And, once a teacher is trained in Facing History, they remain in our network with access to all our resources for their entire career.

Our Current Initiatives

Teaching for Equity and Justice

Our Teaching for Equity and Justice program, a key element of our teacher training, equips educators with the tools and materials necessary to engage in difficult conversations in their classrooms about both historical and current events related to racial equity and justice. Our adult learning model also trains teachers and school and district leadership to drive systems-level change that fosters equitable and culturally responsive practices in the classroom and beyond.

Combating Contemporary Antisemitism

Facing History has always maintained a core focus on helping students understand the historical context for antisemitism, particularly the events leading up to the Holocaust. We are now revising our current resources and developing a suite of new professional development opportunities and classroom materials that lay the foundation for a deep historical and contemporary study of antisemitism, how it functions as a form of racism, and its pervasive role in modern white nationalist propaganda.

Expanding to New Communities

The New Communities Project expands our reach to both urban and rural areas in the southern states where educators may not have access to curricula or professional development that integrates civic education, social-emotional learning, and attention to equity. Led by our Southeast office based in Memphis, this initiative focuses on training thousands of new teachers in 12 Southern states: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia. New Communities is designed to provide the training, content, and resources that educators need to create safe, inclusive spaces where all students are invited to explore our nation’s complex history.

Facing History School Model

Facing History is launching a new program for promoting whole-school adoption of equitable teaching practices and school culture. Participating middle and high schools in our School Model program will commit to an intensive two-year partnership with Facing History that will engage the entire school staff and faculty. Facing History will provide professional development and coaching, in-depth support for establishing an effective school design team, and rich curricular resources, so that by the end of the two-year period the school will be able to independently sustain a school model where equity, social-emotional learning, and civics are woven into school culture and classroom practices. Corporate funding will cover start-up costs for this three-year pilot, which utilizes new content, training, and technology.

Using Technology to Broaden and Deepen Our Reach

More than 119,000 new educators accessed Facing History over the last two years, with record numbers from March through December 2020. That expanded growth can be attributed largely to our rapid pivot to virtual support, which allowed us to engage educators throughout the pandemic, providing tools and guidance to keep students engaged and help them process troubling events. We are now preparing to launch our new Digital Platform with a more robust, user-centered design that will improve our ability to offer dynamic experiences for teachers and school leaders; facilitate nimble publishing of content that reflects rapidly changing educator and student needs; and analyze teacher interest and feedback so that we can provide responsive, curated content and targeted communications.

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Ready to Learn More?

Please contact our Corporate Partnerships team at [email protected].

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