The Rendell Center, in conjunction with The National Endowment for the Humanities, provides access to Summer Seminars.

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NEH Summer Institute for School Teachers

 

The First Amendment in 21st Century America

Date: July 25-31, 2021
Location: Philadelphia – The National Constitution Center
Sponsors: Rendell Center for Civics and Civic Engagement, National Constitution Center
Application Deadline: March 1, 2021
Notification Deadline: March 29, 2021
Deadline to Accept/Decline: April 5, 2021
Eligibility: K-12 teachers
Stipend: Participants will receive a $1,200 stipend to help defray the costs of housing, meals, transportation.

Spend 7 Days in the Birthplace of our Nation Studying the First Amendment

During this one-week intensive Institute for K-12 teachers, participants from across the United States will gather in Philadelphia for a vigorous program of readings about, lectures on, and analysis and discussions of constitutional law and Supreme Court case history pertaining to the First Amendment

  • Experience dynamic content sessions with renowned constitutional and legal scholars
  • Gain critical skills and tools to apply teachings immediately in the classroom
  • Receive valuable reference materials and tools, including a list of books, casebook and suggested lesson plans and activities to enhance your classroom
  • Experience the sights and sounds of Philadelphia during a planned after-hours excursions, including dinner at City Tavern, a night tour of Independence Hall, Philly Cheesesteaks and more!!

Schedule

DAY 1 – Wyndham Historic Philadelphia  – Sunday

3:00 – 6:00 PM

Arrival and check-in.

7:00 PM

Dinner at hotel.

8:15 PM

Welcome & Orientation
Dr. Bruce Allen Murphy
Program Director, Rendell Center

DAY 2 – National Constitution Center  – Monday

8:00 AM

Application in the Classroom
Sally Flaherty
Social Studies Content Advisor, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (Ret)

9:00 AM

Tour National Constitution Center

10:00 AM

The Creation and Re-Creation of the First Amendment
Akhil Amar

12:30 PM

Lunch

1:30 PM

Analyzing the First Amendment Using Levels of Scrutiny
Helena Silverstein
Professor and Department Head
Government and Law Department, Lafayette College

3:00 PM

Walking Tour of Historic Area
Mike Adams
Director of Education – National Constitution Center

5:00 PM

Discussion Session on Slack’s “Liberty First Crisis” book
Bruce Allen Murphy
Mike Adams

6:00 PM

Free Evening / Optional Events

DAY 3 – National Constitution Center  – Tuesday

8:30 AM

Application in the Classroom
Sally Flaherty

9:00 AM

Interactive Constitution in the Classroom
Kerry Sautner
Chief Learning Officer, National Constitution Center
Mike Adams
Director of Education, National Constitution Center

11:00 AM

Freedom of Speech and Assembly from Justices Oliver Wendell Holmes to Brett Kavanaugh
Bruce Allen Murphy

12:30 PM

Lunch

1:30 PM

Speaking Freely on Education Campuses
Keith E. Whittington
William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Politics, Princeton University

3:00 PM

Discussion Session on Whittington’s “Speak Freely” book and School Speech cases
Keith Whittington
Bruce Allen Murphy

5:00 PM

Free Evening / Optional Events

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DAY 4 – National Constitution Center  – Wednesday

9:00 AM

Application in the Classroom
Sally Flaherty

10:00 AM

Freedom of the Press from the Founders to the 21st Century
Bruce Allen Murphy

12:00 PM

Lunch

1:00 PM

The First Amendment – A Judge’s Perspective
Judge Theodore McKee, Third Circuit Court of Appeals
Judge Kent Jordan, Third Circuit Court of Appeals
Judge Marjorie Rendell (Moderator), Third Circuit Court of Appeals

2:00 PM

Freedom of Religion from Chief Justice Waite to Justice Kavanaugh
Dr. F. Graham Lee, St. Joseph’s University

3:30 PM

Break

3:45 PM

Breakout sessions for grade level lesson planning
Sally Flaherty

6:00 PM

Free Evening / Optional Events

DAY 5 – National Constitution Center  – Thursday

9:00 AM

Application in the Classroom
Sally Flaherty

9:30 AM

Super Precedents and the First Amendment
Michael Gerhardt
Burton Craig Distinguished Professor of Jurisprudence, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

11:30 AM

Analyzing Justices using Life Cycle Theory: The Judicial Challenges for Ruth Bader Ginsburg
Bruce Allen Murphy

1:00 PM

Lunch

2:30 PM

Mock Supreme Court – Federal Courthouse
David Trevaskis, Esq
Pro Bono Coordinator. Pennsylvania Bar Association

DAY 6 – Annenberg Public Policy Center – Friday

9:00 AM

Application in the Classroom
Sally Flaherty

10:00 AM

Cyber-wars: The “Free Marketplace of Idea” in Operation on the Internet
Kathleen Hall Jamieson
Annenberg Public Policy Center, University of Pennsylvania

12:15 PM

Lunch

1:00 PM

First Amendment Case Law Review
Bruce Allen Murphy

3:00 PM

Pedagogy Review – grade level discussion
Sally Flaherty

5:30 PM

Dinner at City Tavern and Independence After Hours

DAY 7 – Wyndham Historic Philadelphia – Saturday

9:00 AM

Take It Back to the Classroom Wrap-Up Session – Sharing of Lesson Plans
Sally Flaherty

10:00 AM

First Amendment Wrap-up Session
Bruce Allen Murphy

12:00 PM

Departures

Faculty and Team

Bruce Allen Murphy

Bruce Allen Murphy
Co-Program Director

Bruce Allen Murphy is a judicial biographer and scholar of American constitutional law and politics. He is the Fred Morgan Kirby Professor of Civil Rights at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, a position he has held since 1998. Prior to that appointment, he was a professor of Political Science and a professor of American History and Politics at Pennsylvania State University. In 1978, Murphy received his Ph.D. in Government and Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia, where he studied with Professors Henry J. Abraham and Robert J. Harris. Murphy is the author of four judicial biographies, the co-author of a textbook, and the editor of a reader. Professor Murphy’s books include The Brandeis/Frankfurter Connection: The Secret Political Activities of Two Supreme Court Justices (Oxford University Press, 1982), Fortas: The Rise and Ruin of a Supreme Court Justice (William Morrow & Co., 1988), Wild Bill: The Legend and Life of William O. Douglas (Random House, 2003), and his latest book, Scalia: A Court of One (Simon & Schuster, 2014). In addition to his judicial biographies, Murphy is the co-author (with Larry Berman) of an American government textbook, Approaching Democracy (Pearson Education). Throughout his academic career, Professor Murphy has taught political science, history, and constitutional law courses, including: American Constitutional Law, Liberty in the United States, The First Amendment, Introduction to U.S. Politics, The American Presidency, and seminars on judicial biography.  Professor Murphy has extensive experience running teacher institutes having served as the Institute Director for The Rendell Center’s Summer Teacher Institutes in 2016 and 2017, as well as participating in the Freedoms Foundations Teacher Institutes for the past 30 years.

Sally Flaherty

Sally Flaherty
Co-Program Director

Sally Flaherty has been an educator in a variety of different venues and geographic areas throughout the state of Pennsylvania. Ms. Flaherty currently serves as the Social Studies Curriculum Advisor and Director of Curriculum for the Pennsylvania Department of Education, where she advises the 500 school districts in Pennsylvania in the content areas of Civics and Government, Economics, Geography and History. In addition, she actively works to create partnerships with government, private agencies, and educators to make the best educational resources available to every student in the Commonwealth. Ms. Flaherty also has considerable experience executing teacher institutes, having served as the Assistant Director for The Rendell Center’s Summer Teacher Institutes in 2016 and 2017, as well as regularly conducting teacher professional development workshops across the state of Pennsylvania. Prior to her current roles, Ms. Flaherty served as a member of the faculty of the Pennsylvania Governor’s School for Teaching Social Studies.

Beth Specker

Beth Specker
Program Administrator

Beth Specker is the founding Executive Director of The Rendell Center for Civics and Civic Engagement, where she has worked closely with Judge Marjorie Rendell and former Governor Edward Rendell to establish the organization. In this role, she also serves as chief administrator for The Rendell Center’s Summer Teacher Institutes, overseeing all aspects of the events from program development, to marketing and logistics, as well as financial planning. Ms. Specker was Chief of Staff to First Lady of Pennsylvania, Judge Marjorie Rendell. In that role, she was responsible for oversight of Judge Rendell’s initiative to restore the civic mission of schools, which required her to work with K-12 schools throughout the Commonwealth as well as national organizations such as iCivics, the American Bar Association and the Civic Mission of Schools.  Ms. Specker began her career in civics education at the Freedoms Foundation, a national, non-profit organization providing a wide range of educational and awards programs for students, teachers and citizens. During her 19 years at there, Ms. Specker oversaw all aspects of running 48 educational conferences each year, including graduate programs for teachers and programs for international students. Ms. Specker holds a bachelor’s degree from Villanova University and a master’s degree in Non-Profit Management from Eastern University.

Akhil Reed Amar

Akhil Reed Amar
Faculty

Akhil Reed Amar (invited) is Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale University, where he teaches constitutional law at both Yale College and Yale Law School. His work has won awards from both the American Bar Association and the Federalist Society, and he has been favorably cited by Supreme Court justices across the spectrum in more than 30 cases –  tops in his generation. Professor Amar is the author of dozens of law review articles and several books, including The Constitution and Criminal Procedure: First Principles (Yale Univ. Press, 1997), The Bill of Rights: Creation and Reconstruction (Yale Univ. Press, 1998), America’s Constitution: A Biography (Random House, 2005), America’s Unwritten Constitution: The Precedents and Principles We Live By (Basic Books, 2012), and The Law of the Land: A Grand Tour of our Constitutional Republic (Basic Books, 2015). Professor Amar’s most recent book, The Constitution Today: Timeless Lessons for the Issues of Our Era, was published in 2016.

Graham Lee

Graham Lee
Faculty

Graham Lee is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Saint Joseph’s University. A native of Boston, he was educated at the Boston Latin School, received a bachelor’s degree from Boston College and earned a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. During his 45-year career at Saint Joseph’s University, Professor Lee has served as President of the Faculty Senate, Dean of the University College, and Director of Graduate Programs. His academic expertise centers on the U.S. Supreme Court, with particular interest in church/state issues. Professor Lee has authored three books on that topic, as well as books on the Burger Court, equal protection, and Chief Justice William Howard Taft.

Helena Silverstein

Helena Silverstein
Faculty

Helena Silverstein is Professor and Department Head in the Government and Law Department at Lafayette College.  She received her Ph.D. and M.A. in political science from the University of Washington, and B.A. in political science and economics from the University of Pennsylvania.  Her primary research and teaching specialties are in socio-legal studies, with specific interests in law and social change; legal mobilization, impact, and implementation; constitutional law and rights; abortion politics; and church/state issues.  She is author of two books: Girls on the Stand: How Courts Fail Pregnant Minors (New York University Press, 2007) and Unleashing Rights:  Law, Meaning, and the Animal Rights Movement (University of Michigan Press, 1996).  In addition to serving as Department Head, Professor Silverstein has held other administrative positions, including serving as Program Director for the Law and Social Sciences Program at the National Science Foundation.

David Keller Trevaskis

David Keller Trevaskis, Esq.
Faculty

David Keller Trevaskis, Esquire, is an attorney and former third grade teacher, with a Master’s Degree in Education.   Trevaskis has long been a champion of non-violence, having been th designer of and original trainer for Project PEACE (Peaceful Endings through Authorities, Children and Educators), a peer mediation, anti-bullying and youth court program jointly sponsored by the PBA and the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General. A co-author of the 2017 updated text, School Law: Legal Framework, Guiding Principles, and Litigated Areas, David is an expert on school law and school crisis. He teaches in the classroom and online at Community College of Philadelphia, Gratz College, Arcadia University and the University of New England.

Keith Whittington

Keith Whittington
Faculty

Keith Whittington (invited) is William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Politics at Princeton University, and the current director of graduate studies in the Department of Politics. He has published widely on American constitutional theory and development, federalism, judicial politics, and the presidency. Whittington is the author of Constitutional Construction: Divided Powers and Constitutional Meaning, and Constitutional Interpretation: Textual Meaning, Original Intent, and Judicial Review, and Political Foundations of Judicial Supremacy: The Presidency, the Supreme Court, and Constitutional Leadership in U.S. History (which won the C. Herman Pritchett Award for best book in law and courts and the J. David Greenstone Award for best book in politics and history). Whittington is editor (with Gerald Leonard) of the New Essays on American Constitutional History and editor (with Maeva Marcus, Melvin Urofsky, and Mark Tushnet) of the Cambridge Studies on the American Constitution.
Kerry Sautner

Kerry Sautner, Ed.D.
National Constitution Center Staff

Kerry Sautner, Ed.D., serves as Vice President of Visitor Experience and Education at the National Constitution Center.  In her capacity as VP of Visitor Experience, Dr. Sautner oversees all aspects of the public’s on-site experience of the Center, including the box office, visitor services, and volunteer staff, as well as serving as the lead in the Center’s strategic partnerships in Philadelphia’s Historic District.  Building on her classroom and program development experience, Dr. Sautner also leads the Center’s education and outreach efforts. This includes the development of interactive programs for students, teachers and the public; theatrical productions; webcasts; and standards-based classroom materials available onsite and online.    Dr. Sautner obtained her Doctorate in Education Leadership and Management from Drexel University. She also holds a master’s degree in education from Drexel University and a bachelor’s degree in biology and marine science from Rutgers University.

Mike Adams

Mike Adams
National Constitution Center Staff

Mike Adams serves as Director of Education at the National Constitution Center. He holds an M.S. of Education and a B.S. of Secondary Education Social Studies from Temple University as well as teaching certifications in secondary Social Studies and English Language Arts.  He previously taught middle and high school students in the classroom setting in the Council Rock School District in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.  His experience in museum and non-traditional education emphasizes building connections between onsite learning in museums and at historic sites with classroom instruction.  He has written and overseen the development of standards-aligned classroom teaching resources for multiple cultural institutions and has planned and executed professional development programs for thousands of educators at the Center and throughout the United States. 

Housing and Logistics

Housing

A group block has been reserved at the Wyndham Historic Philadelphia, 400 Arch Street, Philadelphia. It is a short walk to the National Constitution Center where our daily sessions will be held.  The block has been reserved for the institute checking in on the 25 of July and departing on the 31th.

Please contact the Rendell Center at bspecker@rendellcenter.org should you desire to be paired up with a roommate. The hotel is in the heart of the historic district of Philadelphia with much to see and do.  You will be able to stroll the cobblestone street of Elfreth’s Alley, visit the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, Congress Hall, Franklin Court, Betsy Ross house and be immersed in the sites and sounds of America’s most historic square  mile.

Click to learn about the Philadelphia Historic District.

National Constitution Center

All sessions will be held at the National Constitution Center. The National Constitution Center is the first and only institution in America established by Congress to “disseminate information about the United States Constitution on a nonpartisan basis in order to increase the awareness and understanding of the Constitution among the American people.”

The Constitution Center brings the United States Constitution to life by hosting interactive exhibits and constitutional conversations and inspires active citizenship by celebrating the American constitutional tradition. National Constitution Center staff will be integral to the running of the conference. Participants will be able to take advantage of the resources of the museum. They will be able to explore the many powerful exhibits, have lively discussions with museum educators, and/or discover ways to incorporate the web-based, Interactive Constitution into their classrooms.

Museum of the American Revolution

Participants will have an opportunity to visit the Museum of the American Revolution. Philadelphia’s newest museum it explores the dramatic, surprising story of the American Revolution through its unmatched collection of Revolutionary-era weapons, personal items, documents, and works of art. Immersive galleries, powerful theater experiences, and interactive digital elements bring to life the diverse array of people that created a new nation against incredible odds.

Judicial Programs

The Institute also will provide several experiential learning opportunities for the teachers, including a mock Supreme Court simulation led by David Trevaskis, a recipient of the American Bar Association Isadore Starr Award for Excellence in Law-Related Education. There also will be opportunities to engage in dialogue with members of the judiciary during the sessions Judges on Judicial Independence and You be the Judge.

Interactive Constitution

Additionally, attendees will have time to participate in an intensive workshop on the Interactive Constitution, an engaging web-based tool that helps to make the Constitution more approachable and meaningful. During this workshop, participants will learn how to use the Interactive Constitution and bring it into their classrooms. Participants will be provided with suggested lesson activities, including long-term research and writing projects, with a range of lesson options based on grade level, student ability and prior knowledge of the subject matter.

Independence After Hours

Independence After Hours takes you on a realistic journey back to 1776. After an 18th-century-inspired dinner at historic City Tavern, and a visit by Thomas Jefferson, the group sneaks into Independence Hall where they eavesdrop on Jefferson, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin discussing the Declaration of Independence.

Application

Downloadable forms and on-line application process coming soon!

Contact Us

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