House Democrats Oppose Citizenship Test for High Schoolers

Mike Seals - March 8, 2021 10:34 pm

OKLAHOMA CITY — Members of the House Democratic Caucus released the following statements today in opposition to House Bill 2030, which requires Oklahoma public school students to take a citizenship test before graduation.

“I’m not concerned about making Oklahoma students take the US Citizenship test,” said Rep. Andy Fugate, D-Del City. “But, the concerns expressed about people in Portland, Seattle, and Washington D.C. won’t be solved by making Oklahoma students take a test.

“Oklahomans deserve better than political posturing in the guise of pandering to patriotism.”

“I like the idea of our students taking the US Naturalization test as an assignment as a part of a unit when the content is delivered, traditionally in the 8th grade,” said Rep. Melissa Provenzano, D-Tulsa. “I can’t support making it a graduation requirement which only creates more unnecessary mandatory testing for our children. Oklahoma parents have spoken loud and clear- our kids have testing fatigue. Testing isn’t the only way to assess a child’s mastery of a subject.

“This bill is ill-conceived, loosely designed, and poorly executed. It will not turn out well for Oklahoma children if we adopt loose testing protocols, security, and implementation.”

“As a former 8th-grade public school history teacher, I can attest that teachers already cover in-depth what the U.S. Naturalization Test assesses,” said Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman. “Further, as a believer in the importance of  hands-on kinesthetic learning, I know that children learn better by doing rather than by prepping for a one-time test, and if we really want our students to learn about civics on a deeper level, we should invest in civics curriculum that truly engages our children.”

“It is not our business to legislate standards, especially when we already have a civics curriculum,” said Rep. John Waldron, D-Tulsa. “Imposing test requirements that override the work of Oklahoma educators will not solve the problems we face. Students and teachers don’t need another mandate. They need a government that works for them. ”

 

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