The federal Department of Education, on April 19, proposed a new rule to prioritize grant applications from school districts to implement critical race theory, the 1619 Project, and anti-racism into civics curriculum. This continues the Biden administration’s concerted effort to reverse Trump-era prohibitions on critical race theory in trainings throughout the federal government, and support for the advancement of critical race theory in federally funded programs.
The public comment period will remain open until May 19. The rule summary reads:
The Department of Education (Department) proposes two priorities for the American History and Civics Education programs, including the Presidential and Congressional Academies for American History and Civics(Academies) and National Activities programs, Assistance Listing Numbers 84.422A and 84.422B. We may use these priorities for competitions in fiscal year (FY) 2021 and later years. We propose these priorities to support the development of culturally responsive teaching and learning and the promotion of information literacy skills in grants under these programs. [emphasis added]
The proposed rule starts by noting that civics education in America could use a boost. It cites knowledge of the Bill of Rights as one goal. The Department of Education proposes to establish Presidential Academies to train teachers in American history and government, and Congressional Academies to provide enhanced education to high school students in these subjects.