Reading, mathematics, and science are taught and tested because they are crucial for adult success. NCLB requires us to test those subjects, and some argue that we should test only those three. I disagree.
Social studies and writing are as important as science and math for individual adults, and more important for our shared life as a commonwealth. Social studies is, at root, about understanding our shared history, the form of our government, and the rights and duties of citizens. Writing is, at bottom, the skill that lets us share ideas, essential for challenging our government and engaging our neighbors in political debate.
Senate Bill 1 wisely calls for continued assessment and accountability for social studies and writing. Whatever else the House may change, I hope the core content of citizenship continues to be a priority.