How the Supreme Court Ruined Your Child’s Civics Education - Page 3
Some prude-rules are less obvious, like gender-based seating charts and eccentric lunchroom rules. Or the one at Reservoir High School (Maryland) – a principal there decided that students could not stand up at games to cheer for their teams because it’s disruptive. Express your enthusiasm only while seated, young man.
Today our children spend a large share of their waking hours being taught that their civic responsibility is to behave as proscribed by the nearest authority figure. They spend half of their formative life in an environment where good order is more important than good sense.
You might think that this doesn’t really matter; that exposing school children to a public life without rights doesn’t affect their adult views. But a survey of nearly 110,000 high school students, teachers and administrators found that “Half believe the government can censor the Internet,” and “more than a third think the First Amendment goes too far in the rights it guarantees.”
The surveyors blame a decline in civics education for the problem. But another plausible explanation is that the lack of experience of civic rights leads students to believe that these rights don’t really exist. After all, wasn’t student government originally envisioned as a way to prepare young citizens for adult civic life? The social and civics lessons we teach in school do have an impact.