Legislators offer feedback on the state’s proposed Social Studies Standards

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Senator Patrick Colbeck

Senator Patrick Colbeck

LANSING, Mich. — In response to a request from the Michigan Department of Education for feedback from the public and stakeholders on the department’s proposed Social Studies Standards, Sen. Patrick Colbeck, along with 17 other members of the Michigan House and Senate, sent a letter to the members of the State Board of Education highlighting several areas where they had concerns.

“As elected officials, we hear from our constituents on a variety of issues and do our best to be responsive to their concerns,” said Colbeck, R-Canton. “Many of the people we represent have contacted us with questions and thoughts about the proposed Social Studies Standards, and so I spent some time analyzing the proposed standards a little more in depth and found some areas where there should be cause for concern. We’ve shared those concerns with the Board of Education members and are hopeful they will give serious weight to our suggestions.”

Some of the areas identified as needing further review included: Substituting the word “republic” in places where the standards refer to the United States as a democracy, clarifying the definitions of concepts such as the limited powers of the federal government and states’ rights, and maintaining a fair and unbiased view when dealing with issues involving religion and the exercise thereof.

“Our standards should be based on accuracy, political neutrality and age-appropriate educational value,” Colbeck said. “The suggestions we’ve highlighted would promote those tenets while ensuring our children receive a well-rounded, fact-based social studies curriculum.”

A copy of the proposed standards and Colbeck’s suggested revisions can be found in their entirety at www.SenatorPatrickColbeck.com.

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