1 Reply Latest reply: May 11, 2011 12:21 PM by Lynne Hoffman RSS

How important is it for students to study civics?

Khorn Novice
Currently Being Moderated

Justice Sandra Day O'Conner has taken on a project to educate students about civics. Recent polls and surveys indicate that the majority of students in the U.S. cannot name one Supreme Court justice, but can name all 3 of the American Idol judges. They cannot even name the 3 branches of government.  This  Website was the vision of Justice O'Conner and is intended to inspire a better understanding and appreciation for our democracy.  Check it out. If you note the sponsors of the site, you will be assured of its authenticity and quality.


  • How important is it for students to study civics?
    Lynne Hoffman Apprentice
    Currently Being Moderated

    Hi Karen,

    The website http://www.icivics.org/ is most informative.  I think it is admirable that Justice Sandra Day O'Conner is promoting this project.  Personally, I believe all students should have a comprehensive knowledge of civics.  It's sad to think that our forefathers worked so hard to make America great, and many of our young people have limited knowledge of American government.  Civics is a required high school course in Virginia. In fact, the Virginia Department of Education honors a special seal for excellence in civics as stated below.


    Board of Education's Excellence in Civics Education Seal – Awarded to students who meet each of the  following four criteria:


    • Satisfy the requirement to earn a Standard Diploma or an Advanced  Studies Diploma.
    • Complete Virginia & United States History and Virginia & United  States Government courses with a grade of "B" or higher.
    • Complete 50 hours of voluntary participation in  community service  or extracurricular activities, such as volunteering  for a charitable or  religious organization that provides services to  the poor, sick or less  fortunate; participating in Boy Scouts, Girl  Scouts or similar youth  organizations; participating in Junior Reserve  Officer Training Corps (JROTC); participating  in political campaigns,  government internships, Boys State, Girls State or  Model General  Assembly; and participating in school-sponsored extracurricular   activities that have a civics focus. Any student who enlists in the  United States  military prior to graduation will be deemed to have met  this community service  requirement.
    • Have good attendance and no disciplinary infractions as determined  by local school board policies.


    I wonder how many other states require students to pass a civics course prior to graduation.



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