The museum presents a range of programs to educate visitors and stimulate discussion and action, including book signings, film screenings, civil rights commemorations with local like-missioned organizations and community groups. Popular free-admission programs include:

Target Free Museum Field Trips for Title 1 Schools

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The National Civil Rights Museum is pleased to offer an exciting opportunity for students in grades 4-12. Thanks to the Target Free Museum Field Trips for Title I Schools, for the fifth year the Museum will provide free museum field trips to groups of up to 45 students and 5 chaperones. Any Title 1 school in the counties of Shelby, Tipton, and Fayette in Tennessee, DeSoto in Mississippi and Crittenden in Arkansas may apply for the free field trip. Only Shelby County schools are provided transportation.

Schools will be chosen for free field trips through the application process from now to May 4, 2018. Applications will be screened based on the school's Title 1 eligibility. Free transportation may be offered to Shelby County School District school groups visiting on weekdays Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The Museum is closed on Tuesdays.  Trips may be scheduled on weekends, but transportation cannot be provided on Saturdays and Sundays.

Museum field trips will be scheduled on a first come-first served basis.  If approved, you will receive detailed instructions for booking your free Target visit. Reservations must be made by Friday, May 4, with museum field trip taken by Friday, May 18. 

Interested school groups should download and fax the application to 901-527-1229. If you have questions, please contact our Education Department at or (901) 521-9699 ext. 2244.


Education equity Learning series

Stand for Children is partnering with the Tennessee Educational Equity Coalition and the National Civil Rights Museum to host the Memphis Educational Equity Learning Series in conjunction with MLK50, the yearlong commemoration of the fiftieth anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination at the Lorraine Motel.  The Educational Equity Learning Series will center on Dr. King’s platform of quality education with the aim of providing a foundation from which Memphians can become more engaged in issues related to improving education quality and outcomes for students.  The series will address the MLK50 theme, Where Do We Go From Here?, with expert panelists who will provide both a deep knowledge of the subject areas and the ability to connect history, data, and context to identify current and future challenges and solutions.

The series is held in the National Civil Rights Museum's Ford Motor Company Theatre at 6-8pm.

  • September 18: Understanding the Past to Build the Future
  • October 5: Learning the ins and outs of funding (and underfunding) of public education in Memphis/Shelby County
  • November 9: How to build equity in education and an exhibit showcasing education data via the exhibit in the Legacy Building
  • December 12: How do we define and identify quality schools?

The Educational Equity Learning Series is the inaugural effort of Momentum Memphis, a campaign led by Stand for Children to unite the Memphis community in taking action to promote youth opportunity and success.  Inspired by the number of people who heard Dr. King give his final speech in Memphis 50 years ago, Momentum Memphis aims to get 15,000 citizens to commit to taking at least two actions to support four education platform areas – Graduation Success for College & Career, Community Investment for Youth Success, Facilities & Funding our Students Deserve, and Breaking the School to Prison Pipeline – by April 2018. 

Book and Author Series

Stack of books

This bi-monthly event draws authors who have written about the civil rights movement that include personal recollections of events that shaped the nation and impacted on the world. Topics delve into investigations, conspiracy theories, and historical accounts that have survived generations. The Book and Author Series is made possible by support from the Slomo and Cindy Silvian Foundation (NY).