Our Current Issues blog helps teachers connect news stories to their classrooms and students. Teaching the news is time-consuming and complicated; by the time you are able to find and process important issues and identify how to teach them, they are old news. This blog will be updated weekly, with links to classroom-ready news items, relevant context, and suggested discussion questions for teachers.
Podcast | October 21, 2021
This month on “Building Bridges” we wish to commemorate the 240th anniversary of the victory at Yorktown. We will highlight the stories of the critical victory at sea by the French forces who defeat the British Navy for the first time at the Battle of the Chesapeake, the all-important attacks on Redoubts number 9 and 10, and the aftermath of this decisive victory.
Videos | October 14, 2021
During this Close Up Conversations webinar, Close Up’s, Joe Geraghty discusses the Supreme Court with guest speaker Steven Schwinn, professor of law at the University of Illinois Chicago School of Law.
Post | October 12, 2021
Last week, whistleblower Frances Haugen, a former project manager for Facebook’s Civic Integrity team, testified before Congress and criticized the social media company as a dangerous, unchecked force that was “buying its profits with our safety.”1 Haugen faulted the senior leadership at Facebook for identifying safety risks yet refusing to make the necessary changes to […]
Post | October 5, 2021
The Supreme Court begins its new term on the first Monday in October, a tradition that dates back to 1917.1 This year, that meant yesterday, Monday, October 4. In the term ahead, the Court is set to take up many key constitutional and legal issues. To explore those issues, Close Up is offering a free […]
Post | September 29, 2021
In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court declined to review a new Texas law (S.B. 8) restricting abortion access in the state after six weeks of pregnancy. Under the provisions of the law, women in Texas are legally prohibited from receiving an abortion, doctors are prohibited from performing an abortion, and third parties (such as […]
Post | September 22, 2021
Classroom discussion of current issues is one of the most powerful tools available to help young people develop the skills and knowledge required for democratic citizenship.1 There are many forms that such discussion can take, including short reactions to news articles, debates, and semester-long legislative simulations. While all of these forms have their place, one […]
Post | September 16, 2021
One of the most important things that schools can do to promote civic and political engagement is to explicitly teach about elections and voting.1 While this can include teaching about current elections and ballot initiatives or processes such as voter registration, it should also include lessons on the struggle for voting rights by different groups […]
Post | September 15, 2021
Last Thursday, President Biden issued an executive order requiring that all federal employees and employees of federal contractors are required to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. Additionally, employees working for a company with more than 100 workers must be vaccinated or submit to weekly testing. Finally, those working for businesses that receive Medicare or […]
Podcast | September 10, 2021
After 20 years, eyewitnesses to the events share the impact of 9/11 on their lives and on the lives of their family members.