WV is pushing to condense the teaching of high school history to one course. A teacher calls the move ‘dangerous for democracy’

By Ryan Quinn, Charleston Gazette-Mail

January 13, 2020

Within the past few weeks, the United States and Iran have traded missile attacks, the House of Representatives impeached President Donald Trump and a photo emerged of state correctional officers giving a Nazi salute.

Amid all this, the West Virginia Board of Education is proposing to allow county school systems to reduce social studies standards for high school students.

This could severely limit the time teachers can spend on key historical moments, like the Holocaust, plus eliminate the historical context needed for students to understand current events, like wars they may join after graduation.


The proposal was drafted with the help of 109 outside stakeholders, according to the West Virginia Department of Education. Only one was a high school social studies teacher.

Currently, counties can offer a single U.S. history course, but are required to also provide a two-course path.

The state school board’s proposal, Policy 2510 — which the public can view and provide their opinions on until 4 p.m. Jan. 24 at wvde.state.wv.us/policies — would allow counties to eliminate the two-course option. It would also cut the requirement for a fourth social studies credit.