a real chance to improve civics in California

I am pasting excerpts of a press release below, because I am excited about what it announces and I have been involved as a consultant on the project. It is an example of the kind of strategy we recommended in the report of the Commission on Youth Voting and Civic Knowledge, entitled “All Together Now: Collaboration and Innovation for Youth Engagement” (2013):

Sacramento, Calif., August 5, 2014 – California Chief Justice Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torklakson today received the Final Report of the California Task Force on K-12 Civic Learning. The report is the culmination of a year-long process of assessing the state of civic learning in California schools, receiving input at regional meetings, and crafting research-based recommendations to ensure that all California K-12 students gain the knowledge, skills and values they need to succeed in college, career and civic life.  Both the executive summary and the full report are available online.

Members of the California Task Force on K-12 Civic Learning, co-chaired by Justice Judith McConnell and Sacramento County Superintendent of Schools David Gordon, presented the recommendations aimed at providing all students in California with the instruction, support and experiences they need to actively participate in society and succeed in the 21st century workplace.

These recommendations include:

  • revision of the California History/Social Science content standards;
  • integration of civic learning into state assessment and accountability systems;
  • improved professional learning for teachers connected to Common Core State Standards;
  • sharing of curriculum resources and best practices;
  • engaging stakeholders from local government, business, the courts, nonprofits, community organizations and parents; and
  • promoting funding in Local Control Accountability Plans (LCAP) through Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF).