2017 National Seminar for High School Educators

Victims of Communism — Memorial Foundation

2017 National Seminar for High School Educators

Join Us

The Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation (VOC) invites you to the 2017 National Seminar for High School Educators on July 16-18 and July 19-21 in Washington, DC.

The 24-hour professional development program is free to middle school and high school educators interested in teaching about the history of communism and its collectivist legacy.

“I now feel equipped with the pedagogy and scholarly information to teach this subject.”

—2016 Teacher

Past seminar participants experienced statistically significant growth in their confidence and capability to teach about a wide range of subjects such as: communist ideology and history; the character of totalitarian governmental systems and practices; and the legacy of communist and post-communist states today, including the personal stories of witnesses, dissidents, and victims.

“It was very well balanced between information, resources, pedagogy, and lectures. The speakers were excellent!”

—2016 Teacher

The seminar blends together scholarly lectures, peer discussions, and pedagogical sessions to carefully balance content and pedagogy. These components are supplemented with short biographical films and in person testimonials from witnesses and dissidents who resided in communist countries both past and present.

“The Witness Project videos were particularly powerful and the curriculum supplement is excellent.”

—2016 Teacher

Seminar participants also receive and have the opportunity to work through the second edition of VOC’s curricular supplement—Communism: Its Ideology, Its History, and Its Legacy—developed by Dr. Lee Edwards, Dr. Paul Kengor, and Claire McCaffery Griffin, and which is currently in use in schools across the nation.

Over 80% of past participants rated the seminar as better than other professional development programs in which they’ve participated.

“The horrors of Nazism and the Holocaust are taught and highlighted in our schools as they should be. But what of communism?”

—Lee Edwards, PhD
Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation


What to Expect

By attending the seminar, teachers will:

  • Interact with VOC staff, historians, pedagogy experts, and master teachers;
  • Obtain and develop lesson plans for teaching the truth about communism’s ideology, its history in the Soviet Union, and its enduring legacy in China, North Korea, Cuba, and other contemporary communist states;
  • Network with peers from across the country who are also interested in teaching and learning about communism;
  • Hear firsthand from a dissident from a current or former communist country;
  • Receive a copy of the second edition of VOC’s curricular supplement—Communism: Its Ideology, Its History, and Its Legacy;
  • Receive other teaching resources, including books and videos;
  • Learn about future opportunities to become a leader in educating American students about communism.

“An education on the victims of communism is as essential to historical and moral understanding as an education on the victims of the holocaust.”

—Alan Charles Kors, PhD
Henry Charles Lea Professor of History
University of Pennsylvania


How to Register 

Registration is open to all educators currently teaching at the middle school and high school levels. Lunch is provided all three days; there is a reception on the first evening, and a dinner on the second evening. There is no cost to attend the seminars. Teachers, however, are responsible for their transportation to and accommodations in Washington, DC, and may apply for scholarship support of up to $1,000 to offset travel expenses.

If you have additional questions, please contact Dr. Murray Bessette, director of academic programs, at murray.bessette@victimsofcommunism.org or 202.629.9500.


Register  |  Scholarship Application


Jul 16, 2017
8:00am — 6:30pm

Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, 300 New Jersey Avenue, NW, Washington, DC