Reps. Woodall and Hastings Introduce Bi-Partisan Legislation to Bolster K-12 Education

January 29, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Representatives Woodall and Hastings introduced the Civic Learning Act, which would amend the Education and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to increase funding for innovative and evidence-based civic learning and teaching programs.

The Civics Learning Act aims to increase civic knowledge among the electorate, boost civic participation, and strengthen our democracy by ensuring funding for elementary, middle, and high school programs in order to create a lasting foundation for civic knowledge. In 2014, only 23% of eighth graders performed at or above a proficient level on the National Assessment of Educational Progress Civics Exam. The Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania found that only 32% of Americans surveyed could name all three branches of government; only 30% of Americans surveyed knew that the Senate is in charge of confirming Supreme Court nominees; and only 37% of Americans surveyed could name any of the rights guaranteed under the First Amendment. This legislation is designed to reach students early on in their educational careers and prioritizes funding for high-need schools, underserved populations, and low-access areas.

“It is our intention to ensure Georgia educators are best situated to continue delivering the best possible education to our students for years to come,” said Congressman Woodall. “This legislation strikes the right balance between strengthening our students’ understanding of civics while allowing our schools to adopt approaches that fit their individual needs.”

“Recommitting our nation to high quality civics education is vital,” said Congressman Hastings. “It’s shocking that, in 2018, only a third of Americans could name all three branches of government. This startling reality reveals that federal support for civics education programs must be renewed, both to strengthen our democracy and the future of our students. I am proud to introduce this measure with my friend and colleague, Rep. Woodall, to ensure that today’s students become the productive, knowledgeable and engaged citizens of tomorrow.”

Congressman Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia, which includes significant portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties. He currently serves on the Rules Committee, the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, and the Budget Committee.