U.S. Senate Passes Bill to Improve History and Civics Education
This just in from Congressional Quarterly.....
The Senate passed a bill today aimed to improve the teaching of American history and civics in school. The bill (S 504) authorizes $25 million in annual grants through fiscal year 2007 to support the establishment of academies for teachers and students of American history and civics. The grants would be awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Colleges, universities and nonprofit educational research centers would be eligible for the program.
Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn.,, the bill's author and former secretary of the Department of Education, said "improving the instruction and appreciation of history was critical at a time when test scores show many students to be 'civics illiterate'." He added, "When our values are under attack, we need to understand what those values are."
This grant provides monies for higher education. What about American children in grades K-12?
I find it appalling that students of foreign countries know more about U.S. history than American students. It's a sad state when the U.S. influence reaches all over the globe, yet American citizens know little of anything outside their towns/cities/counties.
The state of education in this country is discouraging. And it seems that most legislation being proposed and passed neglects the system that requires the most attention and funds - primary education, grades K-12.