Actor and civics curriculum activist Richard Dreyfuss gets a class buzzing at Earl Warren Middle School in Encinitas.

TEACHERS: HOW TO PARTICIPATE

HOW IT WORKS

Twelve years ago, Congress passed a law creating Constitution Day, a federal holiday to recognize the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787. Nine years ago, the ACLU inagurated a matching program involving hundreds of volunteer attorneys, scores of teachers, hundreds of classrooms, and thousands of energized students. 

 

For the last nine years, attorneys from the offices of the U.S. attorney, the public defender, the district attorney, Navy and Marine Corps attorneys, and numerous prestigious law firms have conducted hundreds of presentations focusing on cases and issues of greatest interest to middle and high school students. While the ACLU administers the program, each speaker is independent and designs her or his own presentation, in consultation with you, the teacher. 

 

We love this program because it provides a special opportunity for all of us to focus on our most important foundational documents, and to engage together in dialgoue and reflect on, and learn more about, our Constitution and the democcratic way of life that it protects. We have nonpartisan study guides that we provide, free, for your students.

 

HOW TO REQUEST A SPEAKER FOR YOUR CLASSES

Because Constitution Day, September 16th, falls so close to the beginning of the school year for most schools, we ask that you contact us now to let us know that you're generally interested. Please include as much of the information we need (below) as you can:

  • What day or days would you like speakers? (NB: you may request a speaker any day on or near Constitution Day or, in some cases, later in the school year if that fits better with your lesson plans.)

  • How many classes do you want covered? 

  • If you know your exact schedule at this point, please include that. If possible, include exact class times and/or a bell schedule, being sure to indicate which is your prep period.

  • If you know now any specific requests you have of the presenters, please let us know (e.g., "Class will not have covered the Constitution yet, so have speakers focus on Bill of Rights and how they affect kids.).

  • Please include a daytime phone number.
     

That's it! We've made the program as simple and non-bureaucratic as possible. If you have any questions or would like to discuss the program in more detail, contact us here or call 619.232.2121, ext. 200.

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