Legislative Advocacy - Influencing Support for the Social Studies in K-12 Schools
Geography - Civics - Economics - US History - World History
Why should Arizona educators be involved politically?
"Why must we save social studies education for all students? A voluminous literature, written by scholars, curriculum makers, and practitioners alike, speaks convincingly to that question. I will only add - at the risk of repeating bad news - that, internationally, public opinion of the United States, both its government and its people, worsens every day. The domestic and international issues facing us are so complex and pressing that, to preserve democracy, as we know it, citizens must have some depth of historical political, and cultural understanding. Making good decisions requires that. It's one thing to have a nation of diverse opinions, which is crucial for democracy, but opinion before knowledge, or without tolerance, leads to demise. We've seen more than enough evidence of that in recent years."
- Judith L. Pace, Education Week (Vol. 27, Issue 16, pp. 26-27)
Sandra Day O'Connor Civic Learning Act
In late 2011, Congressmen Tom Cole (R-Okla.) and Mike Honda (D-Calif.) introduced H.R. 3464, the "Sandra Day O'Connor Civic Learning Act," to establish a competitive grant program for civic learning and require the collection and public release of state-level data from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) in civics and history. Congressmen Cole and Honda are now working to secure co-sponsors. Visit Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools for more information on the act.
"Leaders have duty to maintain, develop education"
by Justice Sandra Day O'Connor (ret.), Paul J. Luna, Lattie Coor and Don Budinger
The recent launch of The Arizona Education Commitment by the O'Connor House and Expect More Arizona has succeeded in initiating a critically important conversation: the Arizona Constitution prioritizes education, and Arizona's leaders have a duty to uphold that mandate.
What difference does it make to a social studies classroom teacher or a district specialist?
"More than ever before, politics and policies are having an impact on what we do every day in our classrooms. We need to take an active role in affecting those politics and policies. We need to speak up and speak out. We have more power than many of us realize."
- Denee Mattioli, 2003-04 NCSS President
How does the increased emphasis on science and math in education impact instruction in the social studies?
Arizona Bans Ethnic Studies for K-12 Students!
PBS NewsHour Extra (Posted: December 28, 2010). Check the PBS website for teacher and student resources on this issue:
As a debate about immigration and its role in American history and culture plays out around the nation, the state of Arizona has banned "ethnic studies" in all its public K-12 schools.
The National Association for Multicultural Education (NAME) has issued a press release on Arizona's policy on ethnic studies. Download pdf here.
What does the future of social studies in K-12 education look like for Arizona students? What role will you play?
Contact your State Representative or State Senator - Click Here!
How a bill becomes law in Arizona - pdf created by Arizona Republic staffers: Download
Contact your Federal Representative or Senator -
Special End-of-Year-2010 message from Susan Griffin, NCSS Executive Director
In November, 2010, at the NCSS Annual Conference, I spoke to social studies professionals from around the country and, as I am every year, I was inspired by their dedication and heartened by their stories from the classroom. I also heard far too often about the difficulties social studies educators are facing due to the challenging economy and the erosion of support and funding for social studies subjects.
National Council for the Social Studies is working hard to support social studies professionals as they prepare students for citizenship, college and career in the face of these challenges by:
• Standing up for your profession and helping educators advocate for social studies locally by providing regular legislative and policy updates and timely alerts for contacting your members of Congress.
• Conducting outstanding professional development experiences through the NCSS Annual Conference; summer professional development institutes; and joint courses with American Public University.
• Providing guidance on social studies curricula through the recently published National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies: A Framework for Teaching, Learning, and Assessment.
• Developing an online community for social studies educators to share knowledge, resources, and support colleagues across the country. The launch of NCSS Connected offers NCSS members new opportunities to meet and communicate with one another online through Community e-groups; send queries and messages to discussion lists; and share presentations, pictures, documents, videos or other content.
• Working with state education agencies and professional organizations representing civics, economics, geography and history to ensure that social studies standards are developed based on input from scholars and professional educators.
The problems in the economy and the scarcity of funding for social studies education also affects NCSS. To ensure that NCSS can continue to lead your profession and fight the marginalization of social studies during this critical time, we need your help. Please consider making a completely tax-deductible year-end donation to NCSS today in the amount of $20, $50, or more. Your assistance will enable NCSS to continue our work and to invest strategically in new programs and fulfill our mission to provide leadership, service, and support for all social studies educators.