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RIDE Calls for RI Civic Readiness Task Force Applications

RIDE to recruit a diverse coalition of stakeholders, including educators, parents, community members, students, and advocacy organizations to support civics education


PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Governor Dan McKee and Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green today announced that applications are now open to serve on the Civic Readiness Task Force. As shared in a joint announcement this past June, the Task Force will consider specific measures to enhance civics education in the state.

“When civics education is taught effectively, students are prepared with the knowledge and skills necessary to become informed and engaged. We want this for all students in Rhode Island,” said Governor Dan McKee. “In September of 2021, my Administration signed into law legislation that makes civics education proficiency a requirement for all public high school graduates, and I am proud to see our state taking even more steps to prepare our students. We encourage anyone interested in joining the Civics Readiness Task Force to submit an application and help build the leaders of tomorrow.”

“A robust K-12 civics education carries academic, developmental and economic benefits, and is truly vital to the health of our democracy,” said Chair of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Patti DiCenso. “The RI Civic Readiness Task Force is an excellent opportunity for all who want to make a direct, positive impact on our students.”

RIDE is recruiting an intentionally diverse coalition of stakeholders representing educators, parents, community members, students, and advocacy organizations, as well as some of the students who advocated for themselves and their peers in the recent Cook vs McKee lawsuit.

“We are grateful to all who have worked tirelessly to move civics education forward not only in Rhode Island, but in our country,” said Commissioner Infante-Green. “Through high-quality courses and hands-on learning, our students will become champions of democracy. I look forward to reviewing the recommendations of the Task Force, and as a result of this collaboration, watching students leap ahead in academic and civic achievement.”

The Task Force will convene for six sessions from September 2022 through March 2023, and be charged with advising the Commissioner concerning:

  • The advisability of adding a half credit course in civics in grades 8 and high school which would focus upon media literacy so students can learn to effectively utilize the internet and social media;
  • Methods and resources to support students in how to have respectful conversations on controversial issues with individuals having different views from their own, to be shared with LEAs, and ways to include hands-on instruction on voter registration that will also be provided to LEAs;
  • Implementation of the Commissioner’s Diploma Seal of Civic Readiness for high school graduates and civics award program for middle school students;
    The development of a specific definition of “civic readiness” – to include civic knowledge, civic skills (including media literacy skills), civic experiences and civic mindsets;
  • Implementation of the requirement in the 2021 Civic Literacy Act that every school district provide one student-led civics project for students during either middle or high school; and
  • Such other recommendations as the Task Force members may deem advisable.

The Task Force will be expected to submit an initial report and recommendations to the Commissioner by March 31, 2023.

For more information, or if you or a colleague are interested in serving on the Civic Readiness Task Force, please visit www.ride.ri.gov/civics-task-force for details and the online application. The application deadline is August 15, 2022 by 5:00PM ET. If you have any questions about the Civic Readiness Task Force, please contact CivicsTaskForce@ride.ri.gov.