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ERIC Number: ED574388
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Mar
Pages: 14
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 6
Civic Education Policy Change: Case Studies of Florida, Tennessee, and Hawaii. CIRCLE Working Paper #79
Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE)
Preparing the next generation of Americans to engage in their communities civically and politically is a shared responsibility. Although civic education takes place every day in homes and community centers, our nation's K-12 schools are in a unique position to nurture and reinforce the civic development of all young people. States influence their K-12 schools by enacting and implementing policies that include standards, tests, credit and course requirements, teacher certification rules, and funding streams. This paper describes case studies of three states that have recently examined their civic education policies. The goal of this document is to inform other states' policymakers and advocates as they consider K-12 civic education policies. These three state examples (Florida, Tennessee, and Hawaii) were chosen because they represent strikingly different approaches to state policy: a high-stakes standardized exam, a project-based assessment, and an interactive course without any state assessment at all. The focus of this paper is on the efforts to influence policy: who was involved, how they worked, and what made the difference in the policy being passed or rejected. The paper also describes apparent keys to successful advocacy across the three states. Florida, Tennessee, and Hawaii exemplify three distinct strategies for improving civic education. No firm evidence exists yet about which approach will benefit students the most, but all have promise. This paper has suggested strategies for passing ambitious state policies, whether they involve tests or course mandates. The details vary in important ways, but all three states attribute success to a coalition of educators. In conjunction with the paper, a fact sheet has also been released that summarizes the main elements of each policy. [For the fact sheet, "Recent Civic Education Policy Changes. CIRCLE Fact Sheet,",see ED574358.]
Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE). Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service, Lincoln Filene Hall, Tufts University, Medford, MA 02155. Tel: 617-627-4781; Fax: 617-727-3401; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: Policymakers; Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation
Authoring Institution: CIRCLE (The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement)
Identifiers - Location: Hawaii; Tennessee; Florida