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Civic Engagement

Republican State Senator Dennis Kruse of Auburn has just hit it out of the ballpark.  He wants to introduce legislation next session that would require Indiana students to take a civics test before they could get their high school diplomas.

According to my colleagues over at the Indy Star, the bill would require all public and charter school students score at least 60 percent of the 100 civics questions that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services uses to administer its naturalization test.

Students could take the test anytime between 8th and 12th grade.

The questions are pretty simple, some take a second or two to think about though.  I scored 100%, but that’s part of my job to know this stuff.

According to story about 92% of immigrants pass the test on the first try, whereas if you can more than five percent of students in some states to pass the exam, it’s called a major win.

Indiana does have a social studies component with ISTEP, but it’s only for grades 5 and 7. I think a civics exam in order to graduate would not only be good for kids, but good for society as a whole. If people better understood how government works, or should work, maybe they would take it more seriously and hold elected officials more accountable.

I think we would also get a better dialogue over public policy issues because we’re more informed as a society.

What is not to like about this?



  • GSquare

    I think that’s a great idea. Many people seem to lack in fundamental knowledge of how our government is SUPPOSED to work. What’s worse, most seem not to care when questioned about it.