New research by Diana Owen of Georgetown University demonstrates that We the People teacher professional development positively affects students’ acquisition of political knowledge at statistically significant levels. Students of teachers who have participated in We the People professional development scored higher on tests of their knowledge of the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, political parties and elections, and race and politics than students in the comparison group. Read the full report.
This article and video from Voice of America’s Learning English website profiles students, teachers, and judges from this year's We the People National Finals. Teacher Robert Peck from Douglas S. Freeman High School in Richmond, Virginia, said that his goal is to let students discover how to be better citizens: "The important thing about the program is that the students have to exceed what I know.... You have to put the resources in front of them and get them excited about finding it out for themselves."
Amy Maddox’s We the People class at Vestavia Hills High School in Alabama received a visit recently from U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions, who spent about an hour with the students discussing the Constitution and answering questions about constitutional law and working in Congress. “I’m proud of what you’re doing,” said Sessions. “Any of you could be a governor or president or a senator. All of you are smart enough to do that.” The class finished fifth in the nation at the recent We the People National Finals.
The U.S. Senate recently passed Senate Resolution 150 by unanimous consent. The resolution expresses the sense of the Senate about the importance of effective civic and government education programs in schools in the United States. It was sponsored by Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa and Senator Ben Cardin of Maryland. The resolution coincides with the Center’s We the People National Finals, one of the most prominent civic education events in the United States.