ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. – Students will receive at least one semester of civics instruction between 6th and 8th grade under a new law supported by state Rep. Mark Walker, D-Arlington Heights.
“It’s incredibly important that our youth understand our democratic processes and are able to become active and engaged citizens,” Walker said. “Understanding civics helps everyone process current events and the role and impact they have on others.”
The Walker-backed House Bill 2265, which took effect in Illinois on July 1, requires every public school to include in its 6th, 7th or 8th grade curriculum at least one semester of civics education. Course content will focus on government institutions, the discussion of current and societal issues, service learning and simulations of the democratic process. The new law expands current practice, which requires high school students at public schools to take at least one semester of civics to graduate, as well as two years of social studies.
“I hope the addition of these courses will spark interest in young minds, and will help inspire the leaders of tomorrow,” Walker said. “The more people we have interested in participating in our government and civic institutions, the better.”