High school students should learn Revolutionary and Civil War history, writes North Carolina State Sen. Marc Basnight in a letter to the state education department. The department plans to teach early U.S. history in elementary and middle school, while teaching only the period after 1877 in 11th grade. That’s a terrible idea, writes Basnight, who is president pro tem of the state Senate.
As a reader of history myself, I think that no one should graduate from high school without a thorough understanding of the Declaration of Independence, the Founding Fathers, the writing of the Constitution, and the personalities involved. Furthermore, it is my belief that only high school students have the capacity to understand complex and awful parts of our nation’s history such as slavery and the Civil War.
. . . Sadly, students know very little about history as it is.
North Carolina history standards earned an F from Fordham in 2006, points out James Elias of Common Core. “Now they’re trying to make them even worse!”
Update: Nominate an outstanding American history teacher for the Teacher of the Year award given by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. The national winner gets a $10,000 prize; state winners get $1,000.
Update II: North Carolina has scrapped its proposed history standards and will come up with a new plan by April.