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Panel Passes Resolution Stressing Civic Engagement Education

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — South Dakota education officials want to improve high school students’ civics knowledge, but they don’t think a mandatory test is the way to do it.

The Senate Education Committee on Thursday approved a resolution to help ensure students are learning the content “reflected in” the U.S. citizenship exam. South Dakota Secretary of Education Melody Schopp says the state’s graduation requirements already entail students learning civics content but the resolution highlights the importance of it.

That’s a different direction than North Dakota. Last month it became the second state to require the same test that immigrants must pass to become a U.S. citizen as a prerequisite for getting a diploma.

It’s part of a national effort to improve civics knowledge among high school students before they graduate.