December 2022 Newsletter

News from the Center for Civic Education

Kicking off We the People State Finals Hearing Season, Helping Us Reach Our Goal, Recapping the National Council for the Social Studies Annual Conference, and More in This Month’s Newsletter

Congratulations to Recent We the People State Finals Winners!

It's We the People: The Citizen and Constitution hearing season! The We the People high school state hearing competitions are officially underway across the country, and we have several state champions to announce: West Valley High School in Fairbanks, Alaska, Valley View High School in Jonesboro, Arkansas, Denver East High School in Denver, Colorado, Fishers High School in Fishers, Indiana, Raleigh Charter High School in Raleigh, North Carolina, River Bluff High School in Lexington, South Carolina, Clay County High School in Clay, West Virginia, and Sheridan High School in Sheridan, Wyoming. We will continue to share results as they occur in our newsletter and on our social media pages. 

Visit our state competitions page to check the status of state finals events nationwide.

Learn More

You Can Help Us Reach Our Goal

It's almost time to ring in the new year. Will you decide to invest in civic education? This annual giving season, your donation serves as a vote to ensure a vibrant democracy for tomorrow. Help us reach our year-end campaign goal of $40,000 and bolster a free and low-cost civic and constitutional education for learners of every age. Investing in civic education prepares learners to create a positive, scalable impact on our democracy and their communities.

I Want to Invest in Civic Education!

Free Professional Development for Grades 4-8 Teachers

Upper elementary and middle school teachers in all 50 states are eligible for free We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution professional development through our new Civics that Empowers All Students project, funded by the U.S. Department of Education.  Go to our webpage to learn more about this great opportunity beginning in the summer of 2023. Fill out our interest form or contact your We the People state coordinator for more information about the project in your state.
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National Council for the Social Studies Annual Conference a Success!

Want to see what we presented at the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) Annual Conference? Check out our NCSS webpage for information on our sessions and links to our online resources for educators! Educators from across the country stopped by our booth and won civics swag—including travel mugs, pens, and textbooks.  

During conference sessions, Dr. Donna Phillips presented our latest professional development program, Civics that Empowers All Students, to the National Social Studies Supervisors Association. Alissa Irion-Groth and Hernán Sanchez engaged educators in our latest free online U.S. Constitution course. Emily Voss and Dr. Phillips invigorated educators for deep constitutional learning using the We the People curriculum aligned with the Educating for American Democracy Roadmap.

We also honored the 2022 American Civic Education Teacher Award winners: Shelina Warren, Justin Hubbard, and Tony Pirotta. The Center for Civic Education and Center on Representative Government at Indiana University presented the awards at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia. The awards are also sponsored by the National Education Association.

We hope you’ll join us at next year’s NCSS Annual Conference on December 1-3, 2023, in Nashville, Tennessee!

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Apply for an American Civic Education Teacher Award!

Applications are now open for the 2023 American Civic Education Teacher Awards. Elementary and secondary teachers who demonstrate expertise in teaching about the U.S. Constitution, the U.S. Congress, and public policy are eligible to apply by the May 1, 2023, deadline. Interested applicants should prepare an application and a resume and request letters of recommendation from the school principal and one teaching peer.

Learn More & Apply Here

Help Make Our Wishes Come True

After a three-year hiatus, we are eager to bring back We the People National Finals as an in-person event in 2023! There are a variety of supplies that we need for the National Finals, and we have created an Amazon Wish List. You can help us by purchasing an item on our behalf, and Amazon will send the items directly to us. Giving has never been easier! Thanks very much in advance!
Help Here

The Constitution in American Life Videos

The Friends of Publius, consisting of We the People scholar and Center for Civic Education board member Tim Moore, along with scholars Mike Williams, Chris Cavanaugh, and David Richmond, have created a free and accessible series of YouTube videos on their “The Constitution in American Life” channel. These videos are a valuable resource for new and seasoned educators, students, state coordinators, and anyone who enjoys mini deep dives about historical and modern constitutional issues. The Friends of Publius regularly add new content to their channel, which you can check out below.

Watch Here

Applications Open for Benjamin Franklin Transatlantic Fellowship Summer Institute

The Benjamin Franklin Transatlantic Fellowship Summer Institute is now accepting applications from students ages 16 to 18 for the program offered from June 24 to July 22. The institute takes place on the campus of Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana. The program is conducted in partnership with the Purdue University Department of Political Science, the Brian Lamb School of Communication, the James F. Ackerman Center for Democratic Citizenship, and the Center for Civic Education.

Former We the People National Director Robert Leming said, “The Benjamin Franklin Transatlantic Fellowship provides an opportunity for We the People students to expand their horizons by learning about law, government, and diplomacy in an international context, meeting diplomats, public officials, and students from around the world. I look forward to discussing government and constitutional issues with the 55 fellows during the institute.” 

The 10 U.S. fellows will join 45 fellows from Europe to take classes in international diplomacy, media and journalism, global problems, democracy, and civic education. They will also participate in debates, practical workshops, and seminars while learning how to organize and participate in community-service activities.

Successful U.S. applicants will receive a scholarship covering all expenses related to the Benjamin Franklin Transatlantic Fellowship. Applications close March 12, 2023.

Learn More

Supreme Court Summer Institute Applications Now Available

The application for Street Law's 2023 Supreme Court Summer Institute is now available online! The Supreme Court Summer Institute provides teachers with a valuable opportunity to expand their knowledge and learn new methods for teaching about the Supreme Court of the United States.

During the institute, participants will:

  • spend six days with high-caliber instructors and expert resource people who lead in their respective fields,

  • engage in a thorough study of six Supreme Court cases, and

  • participate in sessions on the certiorari process, judicial nominations, interest groups, the media, constitutional interpretation, and a moot court.

Educators can find information on the Street Law website about logistics and eligibility requirements. Application and administrator reference forms are due by March 1, 2023.
Give Today
Quick Quiz!
Which Supreme Court case defined Native American tribes as "domestic dependent nations"?

A) Marbury v. Madison, 1803
B) United States v. Madison, 1810
C) Cherokee Nation v. Georgia, 1831
D) United States v. Georgia, 1834

Watch the video and click the button below for the result. 

Find Out the Answer Here!
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