The Zinn Education Project (ZEP), coordinated by Rethinking Schools and Teaching for Change, promotes and supports teaching of people’s history in middle and high school classrooms across the country. More than 80,000 teachers have registered to access people’s history lessons and have engaged in people’s history workshops. On our 10th anniversary, we launched a campaign to Teach Reconstruction to help teachers and schools uncover the hidden, bottom-up history of this era. We offer lessons for middle and high school, a student project to make Reconstruction history visible in their communities, teacher workshops, and resource recommendations. We are hiring an education organizer with a grounding in U.S. history to coordinate this campaign in the South. This is a unique opportunity to play a key role in a groundbreaking effort to engage students in learning hidden history.
- Promote the overall Teach Reconstruction campaign, and in particular the Make Reconstruction History Visible project, to teachers and administrators. Outreach will use a combination of social media, in-person presentations at teacher conferences and teacher union meetings, email to key contacts, and more.
- Identify key contacts to add to the Zinn Education Project contact list.
- Identify key events and other opportunities to promote the Teach Reconstruction campaign.
As classes sign up to engage in the Make Reconstruction History Visible mapping project, some may need assistance in identifying possible Reconstruction sites. The Teach Reconstruction Campaign Organizer will draw on our network of contacts at state historical societies, our Teach Reconstruction advisors, and other contacts with expertise in the respective school district.
- Maintain and add to the list of public historians and other scholars with expertise in Reconstruction history.
- Connect teachers and students to the specific people with the expertise in their school community.
- Assist teachers and students interested in advocating for official recognition of the hidden Reconstruction history with the process and procedures.
Documentation and Communication
Sharing stories from students engaged in the campaign will encourage more classes to participate.
- Visit classes using the Reconstruction lessons from the ZEP site and write short stories about the student responses to post on the ZEP site and social media.
- Write about classes engaged in the Make Reconstruction History Visible project and submit stories to the local press and radio.
- With the permission of the respective school, invite local media to do a story on students engaged in the Make Reconstruction History Visible project.
Make Reconstruction History Visible
Ensure student contributions to the Reconstruction mapping project are part of Reconstruction history and are accurate.
- Review the posts by students and determine which ones are ready for posting on the map and which require further research, editing, or justification.
- Make copy edits as needed.
- Contact the teacher and students if further research is needed or the entries do not qualify.
- Coordinate opportunities for ZEP teaching staff to offer workshops on Reconstruction in key school districts and at teacher conferences.
- Experience in project coordination.
- Knowledge of U.S. history, particularly the Reconstruction era.
- Good public speaking skills.
- Ability to engage with middle and high school students.
- Experience with teaching middle or high school a plus.
- Based in and willing to travel throughout the South.
- Commitment to social justice and the missions of the Zinn Education Project, Teaching for Change, and Rethinking Schools.
The current staff for the Zinn Education Project are located in Maryland, Washington, D.C., New York, and Oregon. The preference for this position is for a staff person located in the South since that is the focus of the Make Reconstruction History Visible student project.
Reconstruction, the era immediately following the Civil War and emancipation, is full of stories that help us see the possibility of a future defined by racial equity. Yet the possibilities and achievements of this era can be overshadowed by the violent white supremacist backlash. Too often the story of this grand experiment in interracial democracy is skipped or rushed through in classrooms across the country.
Today—in a moment where activists are struggling to make Black lives matter—every student should probe the relevance of Reconstruction. Our campaign aims to help teachers and schools uncover the hidden, bottom-up history of this era that teaches and make connections to events happening today.
Health, dental, sick leave, and vacation leave.
Level of Language Proficiency
Minimum Education Required
How To Apply
Submit a resume and a thoughtful cover letter that details your experience with organizing and public history projects. Email to email@example.com (The Zinn Education Project is coordinated by Rethinking Schools and Teaching for Change. Teaching for Change handles the finances and staffing.) The application period will remain open until the position is filled with an anticipated start date in August, 2018.
This is a grant-funded position. Term will be for 12 months with possibility of renewal.