America’s laser focus on reading, math, and
(recently) science blinds us to our current crisis of civic illiteracy.
STEM-proponent Norm Augustine makes
this point in the Wall Street Journal
this week. And an impressive roster of luminaries—including former Justice
Sandra Day O’Connor, former education secretary Rod Paige, and CMO founders
Seth Andrew and Mike Feinberg—does the same in this volume. Edited by WSJ assistant editor and wunderkind David
Feith, the book features twenty-two brief and wide-ranging essays articulating
the problems with civics education, explaining what works in the K-12 classroom—even
how to fight civics neglect in the ivory towers of universities. Unfortunately,
the number and diversity of authors yields a bit of a cacophony of policy
objectives: Don’t look here for consensus or clear conclusions. Instead, you’ll
find in this volume a worthy array of thoughtful observations and
recommendations. Which is a pretty good civics lesson in and of itself.