Today, September 17, is constitution day and across the country constitution day celebrations are planned. I hope to be at one today watching new citizens being sworn in. One great thing about converts (new citizens) or anyone who has made a conscious decision is they have invested in their new country and have learned much about that which they have joined. In fact it is typical to administer a citizenship quiz where a score of 6 out of 10 gets you a pass. So all of those today taking their oath to the USA will have scored a 60%.
However, in Arizona, students in high school did not do so well. Pass rates on a citizenship test were 4% for public school students, 7% for charter and 14% for private school students. Read the short report from the Goldwater Institute (click on the link at the bottom to see the eye-opening and distressing results).
A sampling: Only 26% know George Washington was the first president, only 58% know the Atlantic Ocean is on the East Coast of the US, only 23% knew the two parts of the congress are the house and senate, only 25% know the first 10 amendments are called the Bill of Rights. The biggest outrage (or extreme sadness) is that over 70% do not know that the constitution is the supreme law of the land.
Is this typical to Arizona, I fear not. The report cites a National Assessment of Educational Progress study that even 12th graders did not score over a 32% pass rate (and this is for all of the USA).
If you are a teacher -- try the test (in the link) on your students.
- What is the supreme law of the land?
- What do we call the first ten amendments to the constitution?
- What are the two parts of the US Congress?
- how many justices on the Supreme Court?
- Who wrote the Declaration of Independence?
- What ocean is on the east coast of the United States?
- What are the two major political parties in the United States?
- We elect a U.S. Senator for how many years?
- Who was the first President?
- Who is in charge of the executive branch?
Answers in the link above.
Q. What does this have to do with economics?