What if schools ordered teachers to avoid “traumatic descriptions” when describing the attack on Pearl Harbor to students? That’s essentially what Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and other system around the country are doing. Don Mitchell, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools pre-k through 12 social studies specialist, helped create guidelines for how the subject is to be taught in schools. Here’s how it will be handled:

An iconic 9/11 photo that is part of our nation's history

Teachers should avoid traumatic descriptions and talk about how the attacks affected a lot of people. Instructors can focus on safety improvements post-9/11 and how the date is now a national day of service …

Traumatizing the American people was what the attacks were designed to do. Descriptions of people jumping from burning buildings to their deaths and children dying on planes at the hands of stone-cold evil jihadist Muslim terrorists might not be appropriate for kindergartners. But 8th graders? High school juniors? This is is their history. It belongs to them. It should not be sanitized. Images like this were fine for front pages after 9/11 but must now be censored in our schools to spare kids emotional pain

Images like this were fine for front pages after 9/11 but must now be censored in our schools to spare kids emotional pain

And it is an important part of what happened that day. USA Today estimates that about 200 people jumped or fell to their deaths. The site of people plunging to their deaths motivated hundreds of people in the south tower to flee before the second jet struck the building, saving many lives, the paper reported. Should details like that, so vividly reported in the weeks after the attack, be sanitized?

It gets worse. The National Association of School Psychologists is warning that children may be at risk of an “Anniversary Effect —the experiencing or re-experiencing of strong feelings related to the attacks.”

This dreaded affliction could include feelings of “anxiety, fear, anger, or grief.” Some children could even have “severe reactions” if forced to confront the full story of 9/11, the group warned schools and parents across the country in a memo, including:

“Persistent fears related to the catastrophe, sleep disturbances such as nightmares, screaming during sleep, physical complaints for which a physical cause cannot be found, withdrawl from family and friends, sadness, listlessness, decreased activity, preoccupation with the disaster …”

The cure? Censorship. Parents should attempt to largely erase the images of 9/11 from their children’s lives, the group advises parents and school officials:

Limit TV and exposure to negative images. Watching replays of the attacks or stories about Homeland Security, the ongoing wars, or efforts to catch the remaining terrorists can raise your children’s anxiety levels. Also, monitor Internet and social networking activity.