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Summer Teacher Institute

Application information for our 2024 Summer Teacher Institute is coming soon. Refer to this webpage for future information.

Questions? Please contact Lauren Zalut, Director of Education and Tour Programs at [email protected].

Are you a teacher for the School District of Philadelphia? Are you interested in developing classroom curriculum about mass incarceration and its history? Apply for a chance to be part of an exclusive, four-day Summer Teacher Institute led by Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site's education department!

Eastern State Penitentiary opened in 1829 and remained an active prison until 1971. The penitentiary held approximately 85,000 people in its vaulted, skylit cellblocks over the course of its operation. Today, Eastern State is a museum that interprets the legacy of American criminal justice reform, from the nation’s founding through to the present day, within the long-abandoned cellblocks of the nation’s most historic prison.

Eastern State's second Summer Teacher Institute will take place from August 6 - 9, 2024.

This collaborative and creative four-day professional development opportunity includes field trips, guest speakers, research opportunities, plus space and time to develop classroom curriculum about mass incarceration and its history. The curriculum developed at the Summer Teacher Institute will be shared with all participants as well as the wider School District of Philadelphia teaching community.

Participating teachers will receive...

  • a $600 stipend,
  • Act 48 credit,
  • and a field trip to Eastern State Penitentiary (tickets and transportation funds provided)  for their class during the 2023-2024 school year.

Participating teachers commit to...  

  • attending the entire Summer Teacher Institute and all field trips. The Summer Teacher Institute will run from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm each day from Tuesday, August 15 to Friday, August 18, 2023.
  • implementing the curriculum they develop at the institute in the 2023-2024 school year.
  • teach one professional development workshop for other Philadelphia School District classroom teachers during the 2023-2024 school year.
  • bring their students on a field trip to Eastern State Penitentiary (tickets and transportation funds provided) in the 2023-24 school year, as they implement curriculum developed at the Summer Teacher Institute.

While this opportunity is rooted in social studies content we encourage teachers of all disciplines and grade levels to apply. The content at Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site is flexible and relevant to English, math, science and art classes.

2017 American Aliance of Museums Excellence in Exhibitions Overall Winner