Social History for Every Classroom


Social History for Every Classroom

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Teachers Lay Out a "Freedom Day" Curriculum

Freedom Day I, October 22, 1963, was one of several city-wide boycotts organized by the Coordinating Council of City Organizations to protest Chicago's segregated schools. Participating students instead attended one-day "freedom schools" organized in black churches and community centers, following a curriculum that encouraged students to discuss the meaning of "liberty" and to study African-American history. On the first Freedom Day 224,770 out of 469,733 Chicago public school students stayed home. More than 120,000 students participated in each of several subsequent boycotts, but the police and courts reacted more militantly by arresting non-violent marchers and ordering injunctions against boycott organizers. Over time, only the poorest students continued to participate, as boycotts were organized by different public housing projects.

Source | Teachers for Integrated Schools, "A Guide for Freedom School Leaders," (Chicago, 1966), Chicago Urban League Collection, University of Illinois-Chicago, quoted in online exhibit Fight School Segregation!,
Creator | Teachers for Integrated Schools
Item Type | Pamphlet/Petition
Cite This document | Teachers for Integrated Schools, “Teachers Lay Out a "Freedom Day" Curriculum,” SHEC: Resources for Teachers, accessed April 14, 2024,

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