Back to top

Key Facts

A Common Sense Solution to Our Civics Crisis
A Bout of Banning
Some politicians and parents are seeking to ban controversial ideas from being taught in the classroom. Their concern is that impressionable students will accept misguided theories and false narratives about our history, culture, and country. But the effort to ban particular theories or ideas isn’t enough to solve the problem.
Knowing Good from Bad
Like pulling weeds, successfully banning one idea won’t stop others from finding their way into the classroom. A better answer is to equip students with the tools needed to discern good ideas from bad ones. And that requires a robust and effective civics education.
Basic Proficiency
Unfortunately, national test results show that only a quarter of eighth-graders are proficient or better in civics and government, and even fewer in US history. Americans are unable to answer fundamental questions about our government and how it works.
Solving the Civics Crisis
Schools must devote more instruction time and teacher training to the study of civics and government. This education must go beyond textbooks, instead emphasizing primary documents so that students may understand history from the perspectives of its participants. By building civic knowledge earlier, students will develop greater judgment and stronger resistance to bad ideas later.