Governor Ensures that Students Study Civics and Government

June 10, 2011

For Immediate Release: Friday, June 10, 2011 Contact: Adrienne Bennett (207) 287-2531

Augusta, Maine – Governor Paul LePage signed into law today LD 1211, “An Act To Require That a Student Satisfactorily Complete a Course in Civics and Government to Receive a High School Diploma.”

“Our lessons in the classroom about history, economics, literature, and other subjects do enhance students' understanding of government and politics, however, they cannot replace sustained, specific attention to civic education,” said Governor LePage. “Until the 1960s, three courses in civics and government were common in American high schools. These courses explored the role of citizens and encouraged students to discuss current issues, and more importantly they addressed the need to actively participate as a citizen. This bill reemphasizes the need to educate our youth about the core values of what our Nation was built upon which is ‘We the People.’”

Representative Mary Nelson, of Falmouth, sponsored the bill and serves on the Joint Standing Committee on Education and Cultural Affairs. "We live in a wonderful, open, vibrant democracy, and we need to be training our young people so they can have successful careers and contribute to the economy, but they also need to learn how they must be active and knowledgeable participants in our democracy in order for it to succeed," Rep. Nelson said.