One in four children doesn’t test proficient in knowledge of U.S. history on the National Assessment of Educational Progress exam, a national study released this month states.
According to the Lexington Institute, a Washington D.C.-based education think-tank that released the study, policymakers over the years have de-emphasized the study of U.S. history in elementary and secondary schools and now it’s showing.
Sixty-percent of adult respondents in a history survey knew how many children “Jon and Kate” of the reality show had, but only about 50 percent of those same adults could correctly identify James Madison as the “Father of the Constitution,” the organization said.
A key problem, the study says, lies in teacher certification, which is controlled by state departments of education in cooperation with colleges of education.
History is often tucked under the umbrella of social studies — a mishmash of everything from global studies to sociology — in which critical figures and lessons from American history are often left out, the study said.
In some cases, teachers can get certification as a social studies teacher without having studied any history. One of the study’s researchers, Sarah Drake Brown, said states “often bury their low requirements for history amidst claims of high standards.”
Education reformers need to do much more to restore history as a vital subject in American education, they said.
Time to enter Bibb schools technology fair competition
Bibb County school technology whizzes interested in competing in the school system’s technology fair must sign up by Jan 8.
Forms are online at www.bibb.k12.ga.us under the Technology Fair 2010 link.
Students can enter in a number of different categories, including blogging, digital photography, animated graphic design, technology knowledge and making online videos.
Last school year, more than 500 Bibb students from 40 schools participated in the fair and each participant received a USB flash drive.
Of the 70 first-place winners, 25 students placed at the state competition, including four first-place winners, 11 second-place winners and 10 third-place winners.
The district competition will be 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 6 at Howard High School.
Free workshop helps study, career goals of students
A back-to-school workshop for students to get studying and career advice from teachers is being held next month in Macon.
The Mountain Movers Children and Youth Ministry of Middle GA Inc. is hosting a No Child Left Behind back-to-school workshop starting at 9:45 a.m. Jan. 16. The goal is to help students learn effective ways to manage their studying, testing and college preparation concerns, organizers said.
Work sessions include setting career goals, controlling anger and discipline and using effective study skills, as well as applying for college aid and choosing a college. There also will be education-related workshops reserved just for parents and one for high school seniors.
Some Bibb and Houston County school system educators, as well as retired teachers will be featured speakers. The event will be held at the I.E. Mack Center, 3820 Houston Ave., in Macon.
Registration is at 9:45 a.m. and the workshops start at 10 a.m. and run until 1 p.m. It’s free, although donations will be accepted.
Addiction counselor training to be offered at FVSU in Warner Robins
Addiction counselor training will join the lineup of continuing education courses at Fort Valley State University’s Warner Robins center in January.
The courses will be offered in partnership with the Georgia Addiction Counselors Association. Current addiction counselors also can earn credits toward recertification.
The addiction counselor courses, which will be offered throughout the spring semester, include Drugs of Abuse & Disease Model, Clinical Assessment, Case Management and AIDS/HIV/HepC. The 96-hour set of courses can be taken individually or as a package.
Students also can enroll in new courses about money and life-planning skills and digital photography. Courses such as wedding planning certification, child development associate training, sign language and conversational Spanish also will be offered.
To find out more information, visit www.fvsu.edu/continuingeducation or call 953-7423.
Compiled by Telegraph staff writers Julie Hubbard and Andrea Castillo.