Civic Education Policies: State Profile

Civic Education Policies: State Profile - Illinois

December 2016


Data are collected using publicly available state statute, administrative code and, in some cases, curriculum and standards frameworks. A profile was sent to each state for review and modification, as needed.


Description Citation/Link
Civics, Citizenship or Social Studies High School Graduation Requirements
Are there high school graduation requirement in civics or citizenship education? As a prerequisite to receiving a high school diploma, each pupil entering the 9th grade in the 2008-2009 school year or a subsequent school year must, in addition to other course requirements, successfully complete all of the following courses

Two years of social studies, of which at least one year must be history of the United States or a combination of history of the United States and American government and, beginning with pupils entering the 9th grade in the 2016-2017 school year and each school year thereafter, at least one semester must be civics, which shall help young people acquire and learn to use the skills, knowledge, and attitudes that will prepare them to be competent and responsible citizens throughout their lives. Civics course content shall focus on government institutions, the discussion of current and controversial issues, service learning, and simulations of the democratic process. School districts may utilize private funding available for the purposes of offering civics education.

"American patriotism and the principles of representative government, as enunciated in the American Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and the proper use and display of the American flag, shall be taught in all public schools and other educational institutions supported or maintained in whole or in part by public funds. No student shall receive a certificate of graduation without passing a satisfactory examination upon such subjects." 
105 ILCS 5/27-22.a.4
Civics, Citizenship or Social Studies Standards and Curriculum Frameworks
State standards include civics or citizenship education The Illinois Learning Standards for Social Science (grade-level standards for K-5, grade-cluster standards for middle school and high school) include a strand of standards for Civics. Civics standards are organized around three disciplinary concepts: civic and political institutions, participation and deliberation, and processes, rules and laws.

Sample standards/benchmarks include: identifying core civic virtues (such as honesty, mutual respect, cooperation, and attentiveness to multiple perspectives) and democratic principles (such as equality, freedom, liberty, respect for individual rights) that guide the state and nation (grade 4), comparing the means by which individuals and groups change societies, promote the common good, and protect rights (middle school), and evaluating the opportunities and limitations of participation in elections, voting, and the electoral process (high school).
Illinois Learning Standards for Social Science (2016)

http://www.isbe.state.il.us/ils/social_science/pdf/ss-stds-eff012716.pdf
Curriculum frameworks include civics or citizenship education N/A
Civics, Citizenship or Social Studies Inclusion in Assessment and Accountability Systems
State assessments include civics, citizenship education or social studies N/A State goals and assessment: 5/2-3.64a-5
State accountability system includes civics, citizenship education or social studies N/A 5/2-3.25a
Civics, Citizenship or Social Studies Addressed in Other State Statutes or Administrative Code
State statutes (laws) that address civics, citizenship education or social studies High school students must complete two years of social studies. Of those two years, one year must be dedicated to a history of the United States or a combination of U.S. history and American government.

"American patriotism and the principles of representative government, as enunciated in the American Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States of America and the Constitution of the State of Illinois, and the proper use and display of the American flag, shall be taught in all public schools and other educational institutions supported or maintained in whole or in part by public funds. No student shall receive a certificate of graduation without passing a satisfactory examination upon such subjects. Instruction shall be given in all such schools and institutions in the method of voting at elections by means of the Australian Ballot system and the method of the counting of votes for candidates. The Pledge of Allegiance shall be recited each school day by pupils in elementary and secondary educational institutions supported or maintained in whole or in part by public funds."
105 ILCS 5/27-22(a)(4), 105 ILCS 5/27-3
State administrative code addressed civics, citizenship education or social studies N/A

© 2021 by the Education Commission of the States (ECS). All rights reserved. ECS is the only nationwide, nonpartisan interstate compact devoted to education. 700 Broadway #810, Denver, CO 80203-3442

To request permission to excerpt part of this publication, either in print or electronically, please contact the Education Commission of the States’ Communications Department at 303.299.3636 or mzatynski@ecs.org.

Your Education Policy Team  www.ecs.org