Founding Documents Would Be Studied
Special Report - April 6, 2011
A newly filed bill in the North Carolina House would establish a new graduation requirement for high school students in the state, aimed at ensuring that graduates have a firm understanding of America’s founding documents. The bill, HB 588The Founding Principles Act, is being sponsored by Rep. Harold Brubaker (R-Randolph), along with 10 other cosponsors.
If enacted, high school students would be required to complete a semester long or year-long course studying the “philosophical foundations of our form of government,” along with the founding documents, including the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, and the Federalist Papers.
In recent years, there has been increased concern that American high school students are graduating without even a basic understanding of American history. In a recent American Enterprise Institute study only 15 percent of teachers felt “very confident” that their students could “understand such concepts as federalism, separations of powers, and checks and balances.”
North Carolina has not been immune from such concerns. The Department of Public Instruction came under intense fire recently, after proposing that the U.S. History course currently taught in 11th grade would only cover U.S. History after 1877. After numerous citizens opposed the changes, the proposal was modified and the earlier U.S. History was retained.
Currently, North Carolina’s graduation requirements mandate that students take three social studies courses: Civics and Economics, U.S. History, and World History.
H 588 has been referred to the House Education Committee.
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DPI Revises Proposed History Standards - October 13, 2010
Social Studies Facts At Risk - October 6, 2010
Controversial Curriculum Changes - February 8, 2010
Integrating Worldview and Public Policy - FNC - Spring 2010
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