The Texas State Board of Education has new standards for the TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills) test relating to social studies curriculum. The additions to the State’s government and history curriculum include knowledge of certain landmark court cases. Middle and High School students are now required to analyze them and be tested on their main points.
The State Bar of Texas has made a website to assist teachers and educators in their efforts with this civics portion of the TEKS test. The website contains interactive components, case summaries, curriculum materials, videos, and other multimedia materials. You can visit http://www.texasbar.com/civics/index.html for more information. They have videos and interactive portions as well as printed materials. The materials are divided into middle and high school classifications to keep things accessible, approachable, and easy for all levels of students and educators.
Our State Bar President, Bob Black, has led this civics educational initiative. “Civics Education is critical to fostering engaged citizens who understand our democracy and the liberties the rule of law protects,” Black has said in the October 2011 Bar Journal. The cases will expose students to very important events in American history. Some of the videos available include introductions from Retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor and the Texas Supreme Court Justice Wallace B. Jefferson.