In recent years, much effort has rightfully been devoted to improving math and science education, while U.S. history education has been marginalized. Consequently, American students score better in math and science than they do in civics on the National Assessment of Educational Progress. Read more, here.
This op-ed appeared in the print edition of American Heritage magazine (Volume 62 Issue 5), with a preface from the Editor. The op-ed also appeared in the MetroWest Daily News and Milford Daily News.
It is painful to see a state such as Massachusetts — so central to our Nation’s past — plan to cut back even more on the teaching of American history. In recent years renowned historical sites such as Old Sturbridge Village have reported a dramatic decrease in visits by students because of a reduced emphasis on teaching history in schools (despite the efforts of many dedicated teachers), and an increase in paperwork to justify field trips. (Parenthetically, American Heritagewas launched in 1949 at Old Sturbridge Village, which still guards the original carved eagle used for our logo in its collections. This semester they launched another ambitious venture, the Old Sturbridge Village Charter School.)