Ohio lawmakers pass bill for schools to teach historic documents

A bill that would require Ohio schools to teach original texts of the state and U.S. constitutions, the Declaration of Independence and other documents is headed to the governor’s desk.

The Columbus Dispatch reported the bill won final legislative approval on Tuesday and now goes before Gov. John Kasich.

The bill would require teaching of the founding documents in grades 4-12. High school students would take end-of-course examinations in American history and American government, and at least 20 percent of the government exam would relate to the documents by the 2013-2014 school year.

Critics of the legislation have included Democrats who say the documents are culturally narrow, failing to include texts such as the Bill of Rights, Emancipation Proclamation and Constitutional amendments that address women’s rights, and civil rights.