WASHINGTON – U.S. Congressman David N. Cicilline (RI-01) introduced legislation today to study the availability of civics education for young people in the United States.
“For decades, civics education has become less and less of a priority in our schools. It’s not only a shame, it hurts our democracy. At a time when misinformation runs rampant, we need to give young people a solid footing in knowledge of our government,” said Cicilline. “Right now, only nine states and the District of Columbia require at last a year of civics education before you earn a K-12 degree. This bill is the first step towards fixing that.”
The Commission on American Civics Education Act establishes a high-level commission to study the most effective civics education programs throughout the country. The commission will identify effective programs and courses of study, as well as deficiencies that exist in state programs. It will then produce a report outlining its findings, programs that may be used as a national model, and potential actions for the Department of Education to take.
Commission members would be appointed by Democratic and Republican leaders in the House and Senate, with each chamber appointing 5 members. Both the House and Senate will each appoint a co-chair to lead the commission’s activity.