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March 1, 2003
Vol. 60
No. 6

ASCD Community in Action

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60th Anniversary Retrospective: 1943 and ASCD

To celebrate the 60th anniversary of ASCD, each issue of Educational Leadership in 2003 will look at selected events in the world and in ASCD's history.

In the World

Although World War II dominated the world's attention, other important events also made their mark in 1943.
In March, a landmark case involving education and civil liberties was argued before the U.S. Supreme Court. Before the Court's decision in West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette (319 U.S. 624 [1943]), state law provided that students of the Jehovah's Witness faith who refused to salute the flag on religious grounds could be expelled from school and charged with delinquency, and their parents could be prosecuted. In June, the Supreme Court ruled this practice unconstitutional. In the majority opinion, Justice Jackson wrote,If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein. (at 639)

In Educational Leadership

Educational Leadership's first few issues strongly reflected the shadow that the war had cast over every aspect of life. For example, a reminder in the October 1943 issue pointed out thatStarting on October 20, 40 million Americans will visit our schools to register for War Ration Book IV. This will offer an opportunity to introduce hundreds of new teachers to members of their communities. What plans have you made for making this meeting mutually pleasant and helpful? (p. 12)
A moving article in the same issue by Norwegian educator Aase Gruda Skard, who had emigrated to the United States in 1940, told of Norwegian teachers' resistance to Nazi attempts to use the country's schools to promote Nazi propaganda. In “From Whence Their Strength,” Skard described how, in the spring of 1942, Nazi officials ordered all teachers to join the Nazi Teachers Union and to teach Nazism in their classrooms, and commanded all students ages 10–18 to join the Nazi Youth Organization. The teachers refused, and after receiving repeated threats, resigned their positions. Thousands were tortured, deported, or sent to concentration camps—actions that continued as the author wrote.
Because Norwegians traditionally held education in high esteem and regarded teachers as leaders of the community, the teachers' heroic stand set an example that inspired their students as well as other Norwegians who were threatened by the Nazis. Skard wrote,Through darkness of Nazi occupation, from concentration camps and medieval torture chambers, comes to the world the clear voice of steadfast democratic ideals. Norwegian children are growing up with this voice ringing in their ears. (p. 20)
Sixty years later, ASCD members all over the world continue to act as role models and strive to inspire students with the ideals of individual freedom and democracy. Happy anniversary, ASCD!
—Information compiled by Deborah Perkins-Gough, Senior Associate Editor, Educational Leadership, and David Snyder, ASCD Reference Librarian.

ASCD Resources for “Creating Caring Communities”


Building Learning Communities with Character. (2002). Price: $18.95 (member); $22.95 (nonmember). Stock No. 101240.
Teaching Conflict Resolution with the Rainbow Kids Program. (2002). Price: $20.95 (member); $24.95 (nonmember). Stock No. 101247.
The Soul of Education. (2000). Price: $19.95 (member); $23.95 (nonmember). Stock No. 100045.
Connecting Character to Conduct. (2000). Price: $18.95 (member); $22.95 (nonmember). Stock No. 100209.
Promoting Social and Emotional Learning: Guidelines for Educators. (1997). Price: $18.95 (member); $22.95 (nonmember). Stock No. 197157.

Professional Inquiry Kits

Service Learning. (1999). Price: $189 (member); $220 (nonmember). Stock No. 999223.
Emotional Intelligence. (1997). Price: $189 (member); $220 (nonmember). Stock No. 997146.

Video with Facilitator's Guide

Schools as Communities. (1999). Price: $396 (member); $466 (nonmember). Stock No. 499267.


Character Education. Contact Karen Bohlin (caec@bu.edu), Director, or Mary Worlton (mworlton@bu.edu), Center for the Advancement of Ethics and Character, Boston University, 605 Commonwealth Ave., Boston, MA 02215; (617) 353-3262.

Awarding Affiliate Excellence

ASCD's Affiliate Excellence Awards honor affiliates' outstanding service for education. This year's awards go to ASCD's New Hampshire and New Jersey affiliates for showing significant, effective influence; well-organized, participatory governance; diverse, involved membership; broad, frequent communication; and responsive, quality programs. They will receive their awards at the ASCD Annual Conference March 8–10 in San Francisco. Congratulations to two great affiliates!

Translating Education Research

ASCD recently launched ResearchBrief, a Web-based publication that offers summaries of original, interdisciplinary, education research. ASCD's new resource will help educators, policymakers, and leaders identify and use high-quality research—particularly in relation to the implementation of the “No Child Left Behind” Act of 2001.

Every two weeks, ResearchBrief presents an overview of a recent study and discusses its implications for educators and policymakers. ResearchBrief also looks at the broader context of related research, provides links to resources, and suggests evaluation tools to help educators separate quality research from biased, agenda-driven work.

Edited by ASCD Senior Policy Analyst Dan Laitsch, ResearchBrief is available atwww.ascd.org/direct/researchbrief.html.

An advisory board of scholars and practitioners helps ensure the quality and relevancy of the studies reviewed. Board members are Gordon Cawelti, Director, The Achievement Consortium, Educational Research Service; Penelope Earley, Director, Center for Education Policy, George Mason University; Michael Fullan, Dean, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto; Vinetta C. Jones, Dean, School of Education, Howard University; James Pellegrino, Distinguished Professor, Center for the Study of Learning, Instruction, and Teacher Development, University of Illinois at Chicago; Lorraine Valdez Pierce, Associate Professor, Graduate School of Education, George Mason University; and Thomas Schwandt, Professor, Educational Psychology, University of Illinois, Champaign.

This article was published anonymously, or the author name was removed in the process of digital storage.

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