Founding Philosophy and Principles Act

Founding Philosophy and Principles Act


Whereas, the survival of the Republic requires that our nation’s children, the future guardians of its heritage and participants in its governance, have a clear understanding of the Founding Philosophy and the Founding Principles of our government for a free people, which are found in the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, the Federalist Papers and the writings of the Founders, and an understanding of their preservation; Now, therefore, The General Assembly of [Insert State] enacts:

Model Legislation

Section 1. The act shall be known as the “Founding Philosophy and Principles Act.”

Section 2. {Civic Literacy.}

(A) Local boards of education shall require during the high school years the

teaching of a semester course that focuses on the following:

(1) America’s Founding Philosophy, to include at least the following:

(a) The Creator-endowed unalienable rights of the people.

(b) The purpose of government is to protect the inalienable rights of the people and to protect people from violence and fraud.

(c) Structure of government, separation of powers, checks and balances.

(d) Rule of law with frequent and free elections in a representative government.

(2) America’s Founding Principles to include at the least the following:

(a) Federalism, government as close to the people as possible.

(b) Bill of Rights guaranteed freedoms of speech, press, religion, and peaceful assembly.

(c) Private property rights and freedom of individual enterprise.

(d) Innocent of any crime until proven guilty, with rights of habeas corpus, no unreasonable searches, no cruel or unreasonable punishment, and the right to a speedy trial by a jury of peers.

(e) A virtuous and moral people, educated in the philosophy and principles of government for a free people.

(f) Constitutional limitations on government power to tax and spend and prompt payment of public debt.

(g) Money with intrinsic value.

(h) Right of people to keep and bear arms, strong defense capability, supremacy of civil authority over military.

(i) Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations, entangling alliances with none.

(j) Eternal vigilance by “We the People.”

(B) A passing grade in the course shall be required for graduation from high school.

(C) The State Board of Education shall require that any high school level curriculum-based tests developed and administered statewide beginning with the 2014-2015 academic year include questions related to the philosophical foundation of our form of government and the principles underlying the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution and the most important of the Federalist Papers.

(D) The Department of Public Instruction and the local boards of education, as appropriate, shall provide or cause to be provided curriculum content for the semester course required in subdivision (1) of this subsection and the teacher training to ensure that the intent and provisions of this subsection are carried out.

(E) The Department of Public Instruction shall submit a biennial report by October 15 of each odd-numbered year to the Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee covering the implementation of this subsection.

Section 3. {Severability clause.}

Section 4. {Repealer clause.}

Section 5. {Effective date.} This act is effective when it becomes law and applies beginning with 2014-2015 school year.

Approved by the ALEC Board of Directors on January 16, 2012.

Keyword Tags: Curriculum

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