Monday, March 26, 2007

One More Channel on the "Expanded Basic" Menu

Yesterday, I continued my consistent clarion call for music to be considered part of a "basic" education. There's at least one other subject that's been given short shrift in these TAKS-ing times in which we live: Civics. At least one state is trying to do something about that:
Since the federal No Child Left Behind law was passed in 2002, schools have focused on reading and math, and that has squeezed out other subjects like arts, music and civics, educators say. So lawmakers in Tennessee and other states have proposed bills this year to save civics.

A bill from state Sen. Rosalind Kurita would require the Tennessee Department of Education to create a separate civics course in at least one grade between fifth and eighth grade.

"We have responsibilities to our community and to other people to be good citizens," said Kurita, a Democrat. "And I think that civic classes are a way to teach how comprehensive this responsibility really is."

Kurita said teaching students about voting and citizenship rights is just as important as math and English. Ted McConnell, director of the Campaign to Promote Civic Education - an initiative of the Center for Civic Education - agrees. "Study after study shows that when our youth are exposed to effective civic education courses, they're not only more likely to vote, but they're more likely to get involved in their communities and work toward solutions to societal problems," he said.
Read the whole thing. And again, I implore the powers that be to remember that man (and kids) cannot live by math and science alone; civics would be another great addition to the mix. (And here in Texas, please keep working on that bill that would do away with the TAKS test, OK?)

Hello, Pizza Hut? I'd like one Deadbeat Lovers' Pizza to go: Customers of suburban Cincinnati pizzerias are getting a bonus with their pie--pictures of parents who are behind in paying their child support slapped on the box.

The senior citizens' equivalent of "the dog ate my homework," I suppose: "A mouse stole my dentures."

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