The Cielsa Foundation Publishes Teaching Guide for Documentary Film Rosenwald

              Contact: Lianna Bright
Phone: (202) 362-5760


Washington, DC (July 16, 2018) – The Ciesla Foundation is pleased to announce the release of the Rosenwald Teaching Guide to accompany the DVD and bonus features of its latest film, Rosenwald. The film has screened nationwide at hundreds of film festivals and community events and was shown at the Obama White House.

 Rosenwald is a documentary on the incredible story of how businessman and philanthropist Julius Rosenwald joined with Booker T. Washington and African-American communities to build over 5,500 schools for educating African-American youth in the Jim Crow South. This historical partnership, as well as the modern-day attempts to maintain or reconfigure the schools, is a great dramatic story, yet too little known.

The film also highlights the impactful work of the Rosenwald Fund and its support of the arts, medical research, and equal access to housing. The teaching guide will help bring these inspiring stories into the classroom.

The teaching guide was developed in collaboration with Teaching for Change and was funded by the Righteous Persons Foundation. The educator-ready curriculum is designed for middle school, high school, college, and teacher education programs. Each lesson challenges students to think critically about the ability of individual citizens to create a more equitable world and to draw connections between the events of the past and their own lives.

“The Rosenwald film and its uplifting messages of unity across racial and cultural lines continues to inspire a new generation and to reinvigorate the spirit of cooperation and speaking out against injustice,” said director Aviva Kempner. “This teaching guide will help shape the future generation of leaders and change makers.”

The 101-page guide includes lessons, a viewing guide, and teachable subjects for educational use. It is available for free use by educators and can be downloaded via the Rosenwald website at It is intended for use with the Rosenwald DVD. To purchase the DVD, go to


About The Ciesla Foundation
Based in Washington, D.C., the Ciesla Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public, tax-exempt educational organization. Ciesla (pronounced CHESH-lä) produces documentaries that investigate non-stereotypical images of Jews in history and celebrates the untold stories of Jewish heroes. Ciesla was founded in 1979 by filmmaker Aviva Kempner, who serves as the director. Ciesla’s films have received numerous honors and awards, including a Peabody Award and top honors from the National Society of Film Critics, the New York Film Critics Circle, the Broadcast Film Critics Association and the CINE Golden Eagle Award.