Living history: Greece educators discuss Capitol attack with students

Education

GREECE, N.Y. (WROC) — People across America are still processing Wednesday’s attack on the Capitol, including students in the Rochester area. Many teachers and administrators changed lessons plans to address the events.

Brandin Jones is an assistant principal at Greece Odyssey Academy. He said he talked to several teachers on Thursday about how to talk to their students about the attack.

“In education we’re about exposure and educating, not necessarily persuading, but we want to give students the information, we want to give them multiple perspectives on what is occurring in the world so they can make informed decisions,” said Jones.

Jeff Henley is the principal at Odyssey and a former history teacher. He said before the pandemic, eighth graders took a trip to Washington D.C., making this feel more real to them.

“Many of our students at Odyssey have been on those steps, they’ve seen that building so this is not a foreign land to them, this is not an untouchable place, this is someplace they have been and they have experienced and hopefully they have reverence for,” Henley said.

Jones said he hopes when students learn about the incidents 10 years from now it’s not only about the Capitol being stormed but also the inequities in our society.

“I also hope there’s a compare and contrast situation where we are looking at how law enforcement interacted with the rioters yesterday versus how they interacted with rioters during the Black Lives Matter movement,” Jones said. “We know police officers have the skill set to not shoot first and ask questions later, we saw that yesterday.”

Henley also said they hope kids will see what happened and know they’re the ones who can bring a change to America.

“I think kids can look at this as they’re the future of the country and they’re the ones who can make the change to bring us back to being a beacon for the world of democracy, of free speech, of equity those are the things we stand for in America and I hope our kids can see that and know they are the ones who can bring us there.”

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