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N.C. Lawmakers Call for Study of Nation's Founding Concepts

I recently wrote a story about how a lot of state lawmakers just can't seem to resist the urge to wade into the curriculum.

Well, here's the latest example. In North Carolina, Republican legislators are promoting a plan, approved today by the House education committee, that would require public high schools to teach and students to pass a semester-long course on the concepts behind the founding of the United States, according to an Associated Press story. Testing based on the course would begin in the fall of 2014.

The students would be tested on such matters as due process of law, individual rights and responsibilities, and inalienable rights, the story explains.

My recent story touched on a number of examples of lawmakers issuing mandates in civics and U.S. history. Among them was a new Utah law that requires public schools to teach that the United States is a, yes, "compound constitutional republic." (Better call a political science professor to explain that one.) The curriculum also must provide a "thorough study" of key historical documents, the Utah law says, such as the U.S. Constitution, the Mayflower Compact, and Supreme Court decisions.

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