Looking at the NAEP results, the 12th grade trend is quite disconcerting! This speaks to the types of students we see in our classrooms as well as to our mission as Political Scientists at Two-Year Colleges.
This quote form the NY Times says it all:
“At the same time, three-quarters of high school seniors who took the test, the National Assessment of Educational Progress, were unable to demonstrate skills like identifying the effect of United States foreign policy on other nations or naming a power granted to Congress by the Constitution.”
Low turnout, the diterioration of public debate, inadequate government response to real problems, these are all symptoms of a people that has forgotten they are a “society” – interconnected in numerous ways. These symptoms threaten the persistence of this great nation!
Benjamin Rush said:
“There is but one method of rendering a republican form of government durable, and that is by disseminating the seeds of virtue and knowledge through every part of the state by means of proper places and modes of education and this can be done effectively only by the aid of the legislature.”
It is part of our duty as political scientists to overcome this deficit of knowledge and civic engagement! How do you inspire and engage your students?