As America’s students go back to school this month, America’s schools need to go back to civic education. Our schools are awash in political concerns—from guns to immigration to bathrooms even—but it’s not clear that students have a good understanding of politics, history and civics.
In the last round of national testing, a pitiful 18% were found proficient in history, 23% in government. And these are the future leaders of our republic.
With the emphasis on math and science, and pervasive political correctness, schools are not teaching basic civics. Both instructional time and testing of government and history are down.
A few states are beginning to act, adding civic education course requirements and testing. But more must be done. Preparing students to become good citizens and voters is more important than ever. And that requires a major commitment to civic education.