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Each of the 50 states can create its own learning standards. While schools can teach material not included in them, they shape the content in standardized tests, and many educators rely heavily on the standards as they craft lesson plans. Activists have long seen influencing state standards as an effective way to shape the next generation of voters.
After a local publication, Bridge Magazine, reported the changes, the backlash in this political swing state was intense.
In response, the state brought a broader group of Michiganders into the process to redraft the standards, which will be presented to the State Board of Education on April 9.
Georgia has also debated the term, eventually settling, in 2016, on standards that use the phrase “representative democracy/republic.”The Michigan conservatives — who prefer “constitutional republic” — say their arguments are historical, not partisan.
The kindergarten section of the new draft of the Michigan social studies standards.
A democracy is government by the people, who may rule either directly or indirectly, through elected representatives.
A republic is a form of government in which the people’s elected representatives make decisions.
The board, an elected body with eight members, will then vote on whether to adopt the document.“Social studies is not rocket science,” said Jim Cameron, who led the committee’s work.
“It’s more difficult.”The United States, unlike many other developed nations, lacks a national curriculum that defines what students should know.
The most influential recent work on the determinants of civil wars found the factors associated with the grievance motivation to be largely irrelevant.
Our paper subjects the results of this empirical work to further scrutiny by embedding the study of civil war in a more general analysis of varieties of violent contestation of political power within the borders of the state.