Education and Policy Leaders
Urge Better Civics Education
[Reprinted from: Washington Times, 10 May
Some education officials and public policy leaders are so concerned
that students aren't getting sufficient instruction in American
government that they have formed the National Alliance for Civic
Education to promote teaching of civics in the classroom.
The latest round of scores from the National Assessment of
Educational Progress revealed that the nation's fourth-, eighth- and
twelfth-graders were less than "proficient" on a test of
civic knowledge and skills.
o About one-fourth failed to demonstrate even a "basic"
understanding of political methods and practices. Charles S. White, president of the Social Science
Education Consortium, warned that democracy in America "cannot be
sustained indefinitely if citizens lack fundamental civic knowledge,
skills and dispositions."
o This does not surprise observers, since only 25 states require
civics education in their schools.