Kent Ingle: July 4th civics test — Can we move forward together if we don't know our history?
The Fourth of July, America’s birthday, may be our country’s most celebrated holiday. But the number of young people who can’t identify the significance and historical facts of this event is alarming.
According to a new Marist Poll, a staggering 42 percent could not identify 1776 as the year America became a free nation. Civic education is no longer a priority in our nation’s schools and it shows.
We cannot expect young people to believe in our democracy, let alone actively participate in it, if we don’t even seek to help them understand it.
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Civic education isn’t just teaching young people history. Civic knowledge plays a significant role in a young person’s civic engagement and social mobility as they develop into adulthood. It ultimately reveals how an individual will engage life as a U.S citizen.
An understanding of civic history not only teaches young people how to be active participants in their nation but also keeps the narrative of our government’s establishment consistent. Furthermore, the history of how our nation became free can never be fully appreciated if it is never fully understood.
How can we expect our students to become active participants in our government if we do not take the time to educate them on civics?
In short, we simply can’t. If we want students to be civically engaged, we must equip them to be.
Not long ago, civic ...
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